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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 48176
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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10 years ago we offered a job by letter to one of our

Resolved Question:

Hello
10 years ago we offered a job by letter to one of our employees who has recently left the company. In the job offer as part of the pay deal we offered 3% of salary to be paid into a pension fund on completion of the probationary period. The pension fund was never implemented or discussed, so basically got lost in the system for 10 years. It has only come to light now that the employee has left the company and asked about how to transfer his pension. We are not against paying him a sum, but did not know where we stand.
Thanks
Stuart Speechley
KJS
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. can you tell me is there evidence in writing in the employees contact of employment regarding the pension contributions.

Customer:

No nothing in the contract only in the original offer letter. He has never mentioned the pension over the last 10 years so can only assume he has looked at the offer letter. You would think that he would have questioned why he had never filled out any paperwork for a pension or received annual statements

Ben Jones :

OK thank you, ***** ***** it with me. I am in a tribunal today so will prepare my advice during the day and get back to you this evening. There is no need to wait and you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you

Customer:

Thank you Ben much appreciated

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. If you offered this incentive to the employee in the offer letter and they took on the job based on that information, then you would be bound by it, even if the contract did not mention it. The offer letter in itself would also amount to a contract so you could be held liable for the failure to make the promised contributions. Whilst you have raised the fact the employee did not mention not filling out paperwork, it is not their duty to chase this and they may not have to be expected to bring such issues t your attention – for example some employees may assume that you have the necessary information from the details you obtained from then when they joined. So that will not remove our liabilities here unfortunately.

It is therefore best to discuss the situation with them and see what they expect in the circumstances. You may have to make the backdated contributions to a dedicated pension scheme. It is unlikely you can just give the employee the lump sum equivalent for them to do as they wish as the pension provider will not accept just a lump sum payment for past missed contributions from them as anyone could try and do that when they would not actually be entitled to do so. It may therefore be a case of you opening a new scheme now and discussing the option of backdated contributions with the pension scheme provider, or if they have an open pension scheme already elsewhere – trying to see if that provider would accept the backdated contributions from you.

I hope this clarifies your position? If you could please quickly let me know that would be great, as it is important for us to keep track of customer satisfaction. Thank you

Customer:

Thanks Ben that's all fine and as I expected really. The advice is very much appreciated thank you

Ben Jones :

you are welcome, all the best

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