Workplace Pensions

Auto Enrolment

The Government has now made it compulsory for you to start a pension for your employees and to contribute to it. You will need to automatically enrol them in it as they become eligible. Depending on your company's size you will already have been given a staging date which tells you when you need to have acted by.

This is as a much an administrative burden as it is a responsibility to pick the right scheme, make sure it has been approved, ensure it has the right fund choices for your employees and that your employees are fully informed about their options.

There are big fines for companies that don’t comply - depending on your size. But what is certain is that this isn’t going away so your only options is to play the game.

Company Schemes

As a business owner, what type of scheme is best for you and your company? Could you make your whole business more tax efficient using pensions as the tool to do so? There is certainly no point in paying excessive tax if you actually don’t need the income at the moment. Why are you renting business premises when your company pension could be buying the premises instead and benefiting from it?

As a business owner your options are more extensive than an employee's – from just getting your personal pension paid by the company, to setting up a Small Self Administered Scheme (SSAS), an Executive Pension Scheme, a Money Purchase Pension or a Final Salary Scheme. Many allow you to borrow to invest in your business or in property used by your business.

So choices: pay the tax man OR use pensions as the best tax planning tool that can let you run a more profitable and extensive business? There are limits on these tax benefits so get started soon to make the most of them.

Executive Pensions

Do you want to offer better pension terms to your key directors and/or senior managers. You and they can provide enhanced pension terms to recognise their value in the business. They can also use salary-sacrifice provisions to increase benefits as well.

You can set up Executive Pension Plan arrangements (EPPs), Small Self Administered Schemes (SASSs) or Self-invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs) in ways that can reduce your corporation tax, invest in your business or business property and even borrow against the value. Your corporate pension could actually be an effective business partner if you use it wisely

Want a holiday, a nice car, a house deposit, something special, a holiday, a cruise? Why not try saving for it instead of borrowing.

Key Fact: As of April 2016, Class 2 NICs are to be taken via self assessment. This means that the tax system for freelancers and sole traders will be a lot simpler.