Online payment pages

This practical guide will help you with the compliance requirements for offering UK Direct Debit on your website.

Online payment pages


This practical guide will help you with the compliance requirements for offering UK Direct Debit on your website.


The Direct Debit scheme rules allow customers to enter into a Direct Debit agreement with you online, but specify strict requirements for the content and formatting of online payment pages. To create fully compliant payment pages for your customers, you will need to:

  1. Serve your payment pages over HTTPS
  2. Collect the account holder’s name, account number and sort code
  3. Confirm that the user is the only person needed to authorise payments
  4. Display the customer’s bank details back to them before submission
  5. Provide your own address, phone number and email
  6. Include a copy of the Direct Debit Guarantee
  7. Show a payment confirmation screen

The GoCardless payment pages are used as an example throughout this guide. You can view them in their entirety here.

1. Serve your payment pages over HTTPS

Why? Ensures customer details are transmitted securely

How? Configure your website to only accept secure (SSL) connections

SSL

2. Collect the account holder’s name, account number and sort code

Why? This data must be submitted to the bank to set up a mandate

How? Collect this information on a payment page

Note that you explicitly need to ask for 'Account Name' when you collect the Account Number and Sort Code; simply collecting Name at a different part of the flow isn't enough.

3. Confirm that the user is the only person needed to authorise payments

Why? You need to be sure that the person signing up is doing so with their own bank account

Online Direct Debits can only be used for single signatory accounts. For dual signatory accounts you need to provide the option of requesting a paper mandate.

How? Add a checkbox confirming the person is authorised to set up a Direct Debit

The officially suggested wording for the confirmation checkbox is: "I confirm that I am the account holder and am the only person required to authorise debits on this account."

4. Display the customer’s bank details back to them before submission

Why? Allows the customer to check their details were typed correctly

How? Display a final confirmation before the form actually submits

5. Provide your own address, phone number and email

Why? Makes it easy for customers to contact you with any queries

How? Add a snippet of text on the page

6. Include a copy of the Direct Debit Guarantee

Why? Helps to reassure the customer that they are protected

How? Include or link to the full text of the Guarantee on the page

You also need to include a Direct Debit logo where the DD Guarantee is displayed.

7. Show a payment confirmation screen

Why? Tells the customer that a DD was set up correctly

How? Show details of the newly created mandate

The confirmation page must include:

  • Confirmation that the Direct Debit has been set up.
  • The name that will appear on the customer's bank statement, e.g. "The name on your bank statement will be [your name]".
  • A note that the customer will receive an email within 3 business days confirming that the Direct Debit has been set up.
  • A link to a PDF of their Direct Debit mandate.

Online payment pages and GoCardless

GoCardless offers off-the-shelf payment pages that are fully compliant and can be customised with your business name and logo.

Alternatively, if you want to design and host your own payment pages you can use the GoCardless Pro API to do so, and your Account Executive will support you during your implementation of the compliance guidelines.

To find out more about collecting Direct Debits with GoCardless visit GoCardless.com.

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