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Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
Automatic Enrolment has become effective as of January 1, 2017. Below you can find the most frequently asked questions and answers about the new system encouraging employees to save for retirement in order to maintain their level of welfare during retirement period.
Is there any age limit for employees within the scope of auto enrolment?
Turkish Citizens and all other persons within the scope of the 28th article of 5901 no. Turkish Citizenship Law, employees under the age of 45 by the time their companies are within the scope of auto enrolment or employees under the age of 45 who start to work after their employer entered the scope of auto enrolment in private and public sectors.
Which employees will be within the scope of auto enrolment?
Employees within the scope of State Social Security Institution (4/a) and civil servants (4/c) will join auto enrolment.
Is Social Security Institution for Artisans and the Self- Employed in the scope of auto enrolment?
No. Employees within the scope of Social Security Institution for Artisans and the Self- Employed (4/b) are excluded.
How much contribution will employees pay?
Minimum monthly contribution amount is set as 3% of monthly gross wage. For example, an employee, earning minimum wage (TRY 1,777.5), will need to pay TRY 53 as monthly contribution.
Is there any upper limit to contribution amount to be paid by the employee?
Although the upper limit for the insurable earning for 2017 is set as TRY 13,331.40, there is no upper limit defined for employee contribution amount yet. Employees can prefer to increase their contribution amount in order to reach higher amount of pension saving. On the other hand, Council of Ministers has right to change the 3% ratio or to limit contribution amount to a fixed amount.
Is there 25% state contribution in auto enrolment?
Yes. 25% state contribution will be paid for employee contribution amount with the same vesting rights in the current 3rd pillar pension system.
Are there any other advantages in auto enrolment?
In addition to 25% state contribution, additional one-time-only state contribution of TRY 1,000 will be paid to employees. It will be paid on condition of not using the right to opt out within the same earning and vesting conditions of state contribution. Moreover, additional state contribution of 5% of savings on condition of becoming retired through at least 10-years-annuity.
What should the employees do to use the right to opt out?
Employees will be informed on the work day following the first contribution amount is transferred to the pension account. Employees can use their right to opt out in two months following this notification.
Will there be any deduction from paid contribution amount in case of opt out?
No. In case of opt out, paid contribution amount, along with any investment revenue, will be reimbursed to the employee within 10 work days.
Will the employees have right to withdraw after opt out period? Are there any limitations or additional terms for withdrawal?
Withdrawal conditions are set as they are in the current 3rd pillar pension system. In case of withdrawal, there will be tax deduction for investment revenue, which varies according to the duration time in the system.
Is it possible to suspend contribution payments?
Yes. Employees who does not use the right to opt out can request to suspend contribution payments for a maximum period of 3 months. Employees can also request to suspend payments before or after that period. After the suspension period, employer continues to deduct contribution amount from the salary.
Will there be any entrance or management fee?
No. There will not be any deductions except for fund management fee.
Will contribution amount be protected in case of employers’ seizure or bankruptcy?
Contribution amount is regarded as preferred debt, which employers are a creditor party of, within the context of Execution and Bankruptcy Law. Employers are audited by the Ministry of Labor and Social Security and if employer fails to comply with obligations, administrative fine will be charged.
Will the employees apply to pension companies themselves?
No. Employers will include their employees into a pension plan through pension providers.
For employees working for more than one employer, will there be a separate pension contract for each company?
Employees will have a separate pension contract for each different employer.
If there are legal deductions such as distraint/alimony on the employee's salary (25% of the salary) is it possible to deduct from the salary for contribution amount?
The monthly contribution amount does not change, as long as the monthly premium based earnings or the pension deduction monthly basis is not affected.
Do employees who are already in the 3rd pillar private pension system need to have auto enrolment contract?
For employees who already have a private pension contract need to have an auto enrolment contract.
In the case of a change in the company of employee, what happens to the auto enrolment contract?
When an employee changes the company, if there is an existing auto enrolment pension plan in the new company, the employee's savings and the period of time earned in the system are transferred to the pension plan of the new company.
When there is no pension plan in the new company, the employee may continue to pay the contribution amount, which is minimum 3% of the gross wage valid in the first six months of calendar year. If the employee does not demand, the contract may be terminated.
Does auto enrolment contract continue in case of unemployment?
Employee may prefer to continue to pay contribution amount by oneself.
To whom will the notifications be made if the employee leaves the job? Can he/she continue to pay contribution amount?
If the employee leaves the job, he/she shall directly contact the pension provider. He/she may continue to pay contribution amount by oneself or may terminate the contract.
If an employee doesn’t choose any funds during the entrance to the auto enrolment system, which funds will the contribution be directed to invest? Is there a limit for the employees to change the fund distribution?
The employee’s saving is invested to Interest or Interest-Free Initial Fund in accordance with the preference made. The saving, following opt out period and when not chosen any fund, will be directed to the investment in preferred initial fund following 10 months (1 year in total).
The savings of the employee who completes one year in the system and does not choose any fund will be invested toward Interest or Interest-Free Initial Fund preferences at the beginning.
Employees can change their fund distribution 6 times in a year.
Why would employees who are already in the private pension system, also continue to pay contribution amount within auto enrolment?
The state contribution in auto enrolment will be earned independently from private pension system according to principals of state contribution regulations. Upper limit of state contribution in auto enrolment is excluded from private pension system. For example; in 2017, upper limit of state contribution amount in auto enrolment is TRY 5,332.5, upper limit of state contribution amount in private pension system is also TRY 5,332.5 separately. Employees with existing private pension contract will keep earning state contribution within the scope of auto enrolment contract. The period of vesting for state contribution amount will be saved.
For employees having both type of contracts, continuing to pay contribution amount within auto enrolment will be highly advantageous. Thus, employees will earn more state contribution and in return they will reach higher savings.
Is it possible to reenroll to auto enrolment after employee uses the right to opt out or withdrawal?
Employees who use the right to opt out or withdrawal cannot reenroll to the system in line with their demand. Nevertheless, if they keep working in the same company and if they meet the conditions for enrolling the system; they can be reenrolled to auto enrolment within the regulations determined by Under secretariat of Treasury every 2 years in average.
Until which date shall companies be involved in auto enrolment?
All companies which have 5 or more employees, have to be involved in auto enrolment gradually.
Number of Employees in Private Sector
January 1, 2017
1.000 and more
April 1, 2017
Public institutions under code no. 5018*
July 1, 2017
January 1, 2018
Local administrations + Public economic enterprises
July 1, 2018
January 1, 2019
*It refers to the relevant articles, I, II, III and IV.
Shall employers pay an additional contribution amount?
No. Only employees will pay contribution amount within the scope of auto enrolment. For the employers who prefer to pay the contribution amount for their employees, an employer group pension contract can be signed between pension provider and employer.
How can employers calculate the number of eligible employees for auto enrolment?
All employees who work for an employer should be taken into consideration regardless of complying with the criteria for auto enrolment (the number of workers who are under or below the age of 45)
What happens if a company turns to be out of the scope of auto enrolment due to a decrease in number of employees?
Once a company is involved in auto enrolment, the changes in the number of employees which occur subsequent to staging date shall not be taken into consideration.
Is it possible for groups of companies or holdings to be gathered under a single structure within the scope of auto enrolment?
No. Each employer is taken into consideration separately in terms of number of employees.
Is it possible for the companies which have more than one company in the same or different locations to be gathered under a single structure within the scope of auto enrolment?
Total number of employees is determined as the aggregation of employees who work at the same or different locations in more than one company.
What are the responsibilities of employers in terms of auto enrolment?
Choosing a pension company:
Each employer is supposed to make a contract with a pension company on behalf of its employees.
Choosing pension funds:
Employer gets Interest or Free-Interest Initial Fund selections of the employees during the entrance to the system. Employer makes choices on behalf of employees who do not state their choices.
Payment of calculated contributions:
Employer is supposed to transfer the contribution amount which is deducted from the salary of employees to the pension companies. Public institutions which use “Public Allowance and Accounting Informatic Systems” operated by Ministry of Finance for salary payments also make their contribution payments through the same system.
Considering operational requirements of employer, except for choosing the pension company and transferring the contribution amount, employer may prefer to transfer execution of other liabilities to the pension company.
What kind of forms will be filled by employers so as to get their employees involved in auto enrolment?
A contract elaborating the liabilities of each side will be signed between employer and pension company.
What kind of forms will employers demand from their employees so as to get them involved in auto enrolment?
Employers shall not demand any signature from their employees within the scope of auto enrolment.
Is it possible for pension companies to give any promotions or benefits to employers within the scope of auto enrolment?
Can employers change the pension company?
Employers cannot change their pension companies throughout two years. In the following period (in case of changing), it is required to stay at least one year in the same pension company in order to change it.
Are the seasonal workers within the scope of auto enrolment?
According to the Law, a person in order to be within the scope of auto enrolment should be subject to State Social Security Institution (4/a) or civil servants (4/c) and should have an employer who employs him/her. Accordingly, seasonal workers who work for an employer in private or public sector (4/a) with respect to a service contract are within the scope of auto enrolment.
Besides, according to the 5th additional clause of 5510 no. Social Security and General Health Insurance Law, there are also irregular agriculture workers whose insurance coverage are regulated.
While these workers are accepted as insured in terms of 4/a, they do not have any employers. Because they pay their premiums themselves, those kind of workers who makes casual agriculture workers are not within the scope of auto enrolment.
When should employer pay contribution amount?
Calculated contributions to pension providers should be transferred latest on the work day following the salary payment day. For example, for an employee who gets salary on January 31,2017, contribution amount should be transferred on February 1, 2017 which is the work day following the salary payment day.