Convenience stores are being warned not to neglect their legal obligations around pension auto-enrolment following the recent prosecution of an independent retailer.

The Dorset-based retailer – who had six employees at the time – ignored a letter about auto-enrolment compliance from The Pensions Regulator (TPR).

They subsequently failed to complete a declaration of compliance, which employers must submit within five months of their enrolment start date.

The failure to submit the declaration led to a warning notice and a 28-day compliance deadline. The store owner passed this on to his accountant, who failed to act. The employer was consequently given a £400 fine and ordered to make back payments into employees’ pension funds.

“TPR will use its powers to ensure staff receive the pensions they are entitled to,” said Charles Counsell, executive director for automatic enrolment pensions.

He urged store owners with accountants or business advisors to ensure they know whether or not their advisors would handle auto-enrolment.