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Payroll and auto-enrolment news you can’t afford to ignore

As far as key responsibilities for employers to consider currently, there aren’t many more pressing than payroll and auto-enrolment. Both are critical considerations that you as a business owner simply cannot afford to get wrong. In this blog, Kirkwood Wilson Accountants gives you the latest news and advice to keep you ahead of the game.

Payroll priorities checklist

For the forthcoming Payroll Year End on 5 April 2016, there are a few considerations that you might like to think about. Firstly, consider whether there are any bonuses to be paid for the outgoing financial year and that the correct amount of £2,000 Employment Allowance has been claimed. We also recommend checking that all your Real Time Information (RTI) filing has been completed correctly.

You need to complete and file the final Full Payment Submission (FPS) by 5 April (not 19 April, as it was previously). Of course, the form filling doesn’t end there. Remember to distribute your P60 forms to all employees, and be sure to collate all the relevant information for P11D forms and submit them. If your payroll is processed weekly, seriously consider making it monthly. This will reduce processing time and costs under auto-enrolment.

Looking ahead to next year’s Payroll Year End in 2017, remember to check that you have the correct tax codes and National Insurance categories for the new payroll year. It is worth noting that Employment Allowance has increased to £3,000 to be claimed against Employers National Insurance. However, if you are the only employee (and also a director), the company can no longer claim the Employment Allowance. RTI concessions have also now ended, so reporting must be done ‘on or before’ each payday.

Auto-enrolment action begins now

The Pensions Regulator has now written to all small and micro employers to remind them of their workplace pension requirements. The emphasis is very much on the risks of failing to comply with auto-enrolment legislation, with the initial fixed penalty notice starting at £400. Our advice is for employers to start planning at least six months ahead of their staging date. The number of employers who stage is due to increase dramatically to more than 1500 per day. That means that there simply won’t be enough help available if you leave it to the last minute.

If you employ people and haven’t yet taken action in line with the new workplace pensions, then you must now act quickly. The first thing to consider is who will process your auto-enrolled payroll. Can your existing payroll personnel deal with the additional work or do you need to look at outsourcing the payroll? The second matter is whether you need a compliant system, such as NEST, or whether you have additional complexities in terms of individuals already on a pension scheme. The third item on the agenda is to look at the additional cost to the business, both in terms of pension cost and in terms of processing.

Unfortunately, Auto Enrolment will not go away and you cannot assume that your employees won’t be interested. At Kirkwood Wilson Accountants, we have a great deal of experience in auto-enrolling our clients and this has shown us that in most cases employees do stay enrolled in a workplace pension. Forewarned is forearmed, as they say!

Kirkwood Wilson is here for you

If you would like advice and guidance with all your payroll or auto-enrolment responsibilities, then the experienced and knowledgeable team here at Kirkwood Wilson are ready to lend our support. We can find you low cost, compliant solutions and take away the hassle and burden of the paperwork once and for all! Speak to a Kirkwood Wilson Accountants adviser today about your Payroll or Auto-enrolment needs by calling 01704 546000 or email enquiries@kirkwoodwilson.co.uk.

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