October 2012 Employment Law update

National minimum wage – New hourly pay rates from 1 October 2012:

–   Increases from £6.08 for 21 years and older to £6.19
–   £4.98 for 18-20 years (no increase)
–   £3.68 for 16-17 years (no increase)
–   Increases from £2.60 for Apprentices to £2.65

Pensions auto-enrolment begins – The new duty to auto-enrol eligible jobholders not already participating in workplace pensions schemes into a qualifying scheme or the National Employment Savings Trust.  This will be implemented implemented in stages with both employers and employees paying contributions.

Last date for retirement under the default retirement age

The default retirement age of 65 and associated statutory retirement procedure were repealed on 6 April 201.  Under the transitional provisions,  where an employee was given the maximum 12 months’ notice of his or her proposed retirement date on the last possible date of 5 April 2011, the intended date of retirement would have been 5 April 2012 (according to the Government). The last day for submitting a request to continue working beyond the intended retirement date in these circumstances would have been 4 January 2012, because the employee could submit a request to continue working more than three months, but not more than six months, before the intended date of retirement.

The employer could agree to an extension of not more than 6 months beyond the employee’s proposed retirement date.  In these circumstances, if the employer agreed that the employee could continue working for a period of six months, the employee’s retirement date will be 5 October 2012. This is the last possible date for a retirement under the statutory procedure.

Useful links:
UKnational statistics
HM Revenue & Customs
Department forBusiness, Innovation and Skills (BIS)