Pensions auto-enrolment: What you need to know

Scheme now expected to be introduced in late 2024



21 February 2024

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Although initially envisaged for 2023, the pensions auto-enrolment scheme has now been postponed until the second half of 2024. However, in its commentary within ShelfLife magazine, the Convenience Stores and News Association (CSNA) highlighted that “many commentators anticipate [the scheme] could be even later than this as the legislation underpinning it has yet to be drafted. Once introduced, it will be gradually phased in over a decade”.

Auto-enrolment is a new pension savings scheme for certain employees who are not paying into a pension. They will be automatically included in the scheme but can opt out after six months.

According to Citizens’ Information, under the scheme, the employee, employer and government all pay a certain amount into the employee’s pension fund. A new Central Processing Authority will be set up to administer the auto-enrolment scheme.

An individual will be automatically enrolled in the new pension plan if they are an employee and aged between 23 and 60; they are not currently part of a pension plan and they earn €20,000 or more per year.

For those employees who earn less than €20,000 per year, or are not aged between 23 and 60, they can choose to join the pension plan if they are not already part of a pension scheme.

If an employer does not meet their auto-enrolment obligations, they will be subject to penalties and possibly to prosecution.

For more information on the auto-enrolment scheme from Citizens Information and the amount to be paid into the scheme, visit Auto-enrolment (



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