Latest case highlights the dangers of not meeting workplace pension requirements
A recruitment business has been ordered to pay £10,890 after avoiding their automatic enrolment duties and misleading the Pensions Regulator (TPR).
Hertfordshire-based SKL Professional Recruitment Agency Ltd’s managing director Linus (known as Lee) Kadzere has been sentenced at Brighton Magistrates’ Court for wilfully failing to comply with the workplace pension rules and misleading TPR.
The specialist recruitment agency provided workers to the care sector, but despite their knowledge of the rules, Kadzere and the company provided a false declaration of compliance telling the TPR his company had automatically enrolled 22 staff.
However, thanks to a whistleblower within the business and a subsequent investigation by TPR, it was revealed that although a pension scheme had been set up, staff had not been enrolled and pension contributions deducted from pay had not been paid into the scheme.
District Judge Teresa Szagun said Kadzere had been “reckless” in his approach to his responsibilities and that “failure to comply has a detrimental economic impact not only for the individuals concerned but for society as a whole”.
As the company’s director, Kadzere was fined £1,300 plus a victim surcharge of £120, while SKL was fined £6,000 plus a victim surcharge of £120 and prosecution costs of £3,350.
Darren Ryder, TPR’s Director of Automatic Enrolment, said: “TPR will not stand by if an employer wilfully fails to meet their responsibilities towards their staff – we will take action to make sure workers get the pensions they are due.”