Pension reforms put before Parliament Go compare with our comparison table

Pension reforms put before Parliament

13 January 2010 / by Rebecca Sargent

The Government's proposed pension reforms were put before Parliament yesterday.

The reforms, which aim to make pension saving easier for both employers and employees, include an auto-enrolment scheme targeting lower earners, and set out a number of legal requirements for employers.

Commenting on the news, secretary of state for Work and Pensions, Yvette Cooper said: "Even during these difficult economic times, employers, industry and unions agreed with us that these reforms were vital in giving millions of people the chance to save for a pension for the first time.

"All employers will be required to pay into a pension for their workers for the first time," she added.

Auto-enrolment, which has caused concern for pension industry experts, is to be introduced in 2012 but will not be fully phased in until 2017.

Pension bodies have had mixed reactions to the measures; Joanne Segars, chief executive at the National Association of Pension Funds said: "The announcement is an important step forward to ensuring every working person has a pension that comes with their job.

"The Government has listened to many of our concerns on how employers must auto-enrol their staff into a pension. We welcome the more pragmatic approach they have now taken."

While director of employment policy at the CBI, Katja Hall said: "The CBI supports moves to encourage more people to save for their retirement.

"The changes announced today show that the Government has listened to businesses.

"However, discussions are still taking place about how these reforms will affect firms with existing pension schemes. The Government needs to ensure it does not make the system too onerous for companies who are already doing more than the law will require, or it could encourage them to cut contributions to the legal minimum."

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