Employer Pension Obligation
Where an employee is not eligible to join a company pension scheme within 6 months of commencing employment, an employer must provide access to a standard Personal Retirement Saving’s Account (PRSA). This applies to all employers regardless of the size of the workforce and it also applies to all employees regardless of the nature of their contract i.e., fixed-term, casual, full-time, part-time etc.
At present there is no legal obligation for employers to set up or contribute to a pension scheme for their employees. If your employer doesn’t have a pension scheme or if you are an ‘excluded employee’, your employer will need to provide you with access to at least one Standard PRSA. (Pension Authority 2021).
If all employees are eligible to join the company pension scheme within six months of joining the company an employer is not obliged to provide access to a PRSA. Employees who contribute to any company pension scheme which does not offer a facility for making additional voluntary contributions, must be given access to a Standard PRSA by the employer.
An employer must inform employee’s that they can contribute to a PRSA and employers must also facilitate the PRSA provider with access to employee’s during working hours at the workplace to set up the PRSA. Employers may also provide an employee with paid time off to set up a PRSA.
Any PRSA contributions due to the PRSA provider must be paid by an employer by the 21stof the month, after the month in which they were deducted, with no deduction being allowed for employers’ expenses. For Example, PRSA contributions deducted during the month of April must be paid to the PRSA provider by 21stMay.
If an employee chooses to enter a contract with another PRSA provider other than the Standard PRSA provided by the employer, the employer is not obliged to make PRSA deductions from the employee’s salary and then pay them over to the employee’s chosen PRSA provider.
An employer must notify the employee’s and the PRSA provider, in writing, at least once a month, of the total amount deducted from the employee’s salary and the total amount of the employer’s contributions, if any, in the preceding month. The most efficient way to do this is to show the contributions on an employee’s pay slip.
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