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Payments Council implements next-day Electronic Payments rule

Published on Wednesday, January 04, 2012

On 1 January 2012, a new rule for internet and phone payments was brought into force by the Payments Council. The rule, technically known as D+1, states that payments made anywhere in the EU must reach the recipient's account by the next working day.

Payments Council logoEven though the Faster Payments Service means that the UK already exceeds the new standard, Payments Council figures have revealed that 1 in 7 online payments in the UK took longer than a day to reach their destination in 2011 - a trend the Council is keen to put an end to.

The Payments Council anticipates that the D+1 regulation will increase the volume of UK Faster Payments by 25% this year, creating an additional 15 million electronic payments each month. The Chief Executive of the Payments Council, Adrian Kamellard, called the change 'great news for consumers and businesses'. In 2011, in excess of £200 billion was processed in more than 500 million Faster Payments transactions.

It is important to note, however, that only accounts classified as 'payment accounts' - including all UK credit card accounts and some easy access savings accounts - are subject to the new regulation. In 2011, most UK credit card accounts already benefitted from Faster Payments, in contrast to easy access savings accounts, which are regulated for the first time under the new ruling.

Accounts not subject to the new rule are those with restrictions such as notice periods or limits for withdrawing funds, for example ISA accounts. The rules for Direct Debits and Bacs Direct Credits remain unchanged because their rules dictate that money is paid and received on set dates, meaning these payment methods adhere to the new standard. Also unaffected by the new rule is that old-fashioned manual payment option the cheque, which will still take up to 6 days to process.