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.
The Direct Debit Guarantee in Plain English
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.
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.
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.