Teachers' Pensions
Employer FAQs

Some questions keep being raised. So we've compiled a list of the most frequently asked ones - along with their answers.

Popular Questions

Q I read on the Pensions Regulator's website that anyone earning above a certain amount has to be automatically enrolled, how does this affect supply teachers whose earnings cannot be forecast?

A

Enrolment in the Teachers' Pension Scheme is not dependent on earnings. People who entered employment which is pensionable under the Scheme on or after 1 January 2007 are automatically members regardless of earnings. With effect from 1 October 2012 the minimum age for membership of the Teachers' Pension Scheme is 16. The maximum age remains 75.


If a person has opted out under the Teachers' Pension Scheme legislation after an employer's Staging Date then the employer must monitor that individual. If they reach any of the trigger points of age or earnings the individual will be subject to Auto Enrolment. They can opt out again.


If a member opts out within one month that is considered to be under the Auto Enrolment provisions.


If a member opts out within 3 months that is considered to be under the 'contractual' Scheme arrangements and it's intended that the Scheme provisions continue to apply.

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Q Does a change of PAYE scheme change my staging date?

A

No, if your (school or Local Authority) change your PAYE scheme this will not change your Staging Date. For example, if the Council outsources their payroll and they set up a new PAYE scheme their Staging Date will remain the same.


The only situation where you would get a new Staging Date is if your status changes and you become a new legal employing entity. The most likely reason for this is because you convert to an Academy.


For more general FAQs on Auto Enrolment see: http://help.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/faq/

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Q What is Automatic Re-enrolment?

A

Every three years you'll need to put members of the Teachers' Pension Scheme back into the Scheme if they opted out and are an eligible job holder (and if you're not applying an Auto Enrolment exception to them). This is known as Automatic Re-enrolment. The Pensions Regulator will write to you in advance of your Automatic Re-enrolment date to remind you.


More about Automatic Re-enrolment can be found here.

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Q What is an Auto Enrolment exception?

A

It's optional whether to Auto Enrol or Auto Re-enrol an eligible jobholder who opted out within the 12 months prior to the Enrolment / Re-Enrolment date.


It's optional whether to Auto Enrol or Auto Re-enrol an employee who has given notice or been given notice of the end of their employment.


You don't have to Auto Enrol or Auto Re-enrol an employee if you have reasonable grounds to believe the employee is protected from tax charges on their pension savings under HMRC protections.


Further information and other exceptions can be found here.

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Q How do I find out about my Staging Date?

A

You can find out when your Staging Date is by visiting the Pensions Regulator's website.


Where there are a number of employers in a group, the Staging Date will be that of the largest PAYE, hence maintained schools will come under the Local Authority's Staging Date.

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