The Direct Debit guarantee is the Direct Debit scheme’s customer protection.

The guarantee is offered by all building societies and banks who accept direct debits. As a customer, the Direct Debit Guarantee protects you against payments made in error. This means Direct Debit is the safest payment method in the UK.

Direct Debit logo

The Direct Debit Guarantee

– This Guarantee is offered by all banks and building societies that accept instructions to pay Direct Debits.

– If there are any changes to the amount, date or frequency of your Direct Debit, the organisation collecting the payments will notify you (usually 10 working days) in advance of your account being debited or as otherwise agreed. If you request the organisation to collect a payment, confirmation of the amount and date will be given to you at the time of the request.

– If an error is made in the payment of your Direct Debit by the organisation or your bank or building society, you are entitled to a full and immediate refund of the amount paid from your bank or building society.

– If you receive a refund you are not entitled to, you must pay it back when the organisation asks you to

– You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time by simply contacting your bank or building society. Written confirmation may be required. Please also notify the organisation.

The Direct Debit Guarantee in Plain English

  1. Advance notice. You must be told about any changes to the amount, date or frequency of a payment in advance. You can agree any notice period with a merchant (check their terms and conditions) but if no other time period is agreed it will be 10 working days. If you are not given the correct notice of a payment then you will be entitled to claim a refund.

  2. Immediate refunds. You can get a full and immediate refund from your bank (also known as an “indemnity claim”) for any payment taken in error.

  3. Instant cancellations. You can cancel a Direct Debit payment at any time before the payment is due to be made. If a payment is taken after you have cancelled it you will be entitled to an immediate refund from your bank.