Hello, I received an e-mail yesterday from Smart Pensions asking me to complete a questionnaire and telling me that they would be making a £10+VAT a month administration charge for employer schemes where no members are enrolled in the scheme. I contacted them and asked them to confirm that this charge would not apply where an employee had been enrolled but had opted out. In their eventual reply they said (in very poor English) that it might and if I completed their questionnaire they would tell me. The questionnaire makes no mention of the situation where an employee has been enrolled but opted out, but does require me to agree to the charge. So it does appear they are going to charge.
I have six employer schemes with them where all employees have opted out, mainly for spouses where the admin costs of operating AE are greater than the potential benefit from the modest contributions that would be due.
I am aware that NEST offer employer schemes without charge, but in the past I found them very difficult to deal with which is why I moved to Smart in the first place, and I am not keen to go back!
Are there any other provider that offer schemes for employers without charge? The other option would be to reduce pay so there are no eligible workers but that could result in wasted personal allowances so maybe not ideal.
Any thoughts as to how best to approach this would be appreciated.