A comprehensive list of Bacs terms and their meaning


The transaction code used in the AUDDIS service to cancel an existing DDI with a PSP​


The transaction code used in the AUDDIS service to set up a new DDI with a PSP


The transaction code used in the AUDDIS service to convert an existing manually set up DDI with a PSP

Acceptance of Transfer Request

Message from ceding Cash ISA provider to acquiring ISA provider that accepts a transfer request, and thus undertakes to transfer the appropriate sum of money in accordance with the transfer request​

Account holding bank

See entry - 'Account Hol​ding PSP​'​​​

Account holding PSP

The PSP that holds the account to be credited or debited​

Account limit

​A monetary limit set by the sponsor on an individual account to restrict the value passing through​

Account Party

An account holder or authorised party / officer of a current account (e.g. includes power of attorney)

Account Switch

The process of moving an account from one PSP to another PSP, which may include all (full transfer) or some (partial transfer) payment arrangements​

Account Switch chain

A set of linked full account switches where a customer has switched accounts multiple times. The chain contains the list of all switched (old account to new account combinations) from the original switch to the latest. Each entry in the chain represents one full switch​

Account Switching Service

See entry - 'Current Account Swi​tch Service​'​​​

Acquiring ISA provider

The Cash ISA provider that a Cash ISA is being transferred to – this could be another Cash ISA provider, a Stocks & Shares ISA or an Innovative Finance ISA provider​

ADDACS Reason Code 3 (Advice)

An ADDACS advice advising that the customer detailed thereon has transferred their account. The wording of the advice is “Account transferred to a new bank or building society”. Service users must action the advices immediately or within 3 working days of receipt

Advance notice

​The notice period (default is 10 working days plus postal time) given to the payer in respect of the date of debiting and the amount to be debited​​​

Advice of Wrong Account for Automated Credits Service - AWACS

​If a Bacs Direct Credit has incorrect account destination details the receiving PSP may try to locate the correct account and advise the originating organisation of the details. AWACS is the automated system used to notify the organisation of the correct details to be used for future payments​.  It is also used for example in the Current Account Switch Service to advise of new PSP account details where a Bacs Direct Credit has been redirected by the central redirection service

Agency Arrangement

An arrangement provided by a Settlement PSP to a non-settlement PSP, allowing them to clear debit and credit items

Agency bank

See entry - 'Agency ​PSP​'​​​

Agency PSP

Any PSP that is not a direct participant of Bacs but has an agency relationship with a direct participant for purposes such as settlement. Sometimes referred to as an indirect clearer​


A third party that provides one or more Payment Service Providers (PSPs) with a technical access solution enabling​ the submission of input to, and, more importantly, the collection of output from, the Bacs service

Also see - 'Bure​au​​​'

Amalgamation of collections

Multiple or combined payments relating to more than one contract collected under a single Direct Debit Instruction (DDI)​​


​This is a legal warrant lodged by a Sherriff Officer or a Messenger-at-Arms with a person owing money to or holding goods on behalf of another who is being sued by a third party, for payment of a debt performance of an obligation​


For the purpose of AUDDIS the AUDDIS DDI is either the instruction itself or any subsequent written communication from the customer to the service user amending the terms of the original AUDDIS DDI

Authorised E-Money Institution

The Financial Conduct Authority authorises E-Money Institutions in accordance with the Electronic Money Regulations 2011​

Authorised Payment Institution

The Financial Conduct Authority authorises Payment Institutions in accordance with the Payment Service Regulations 2017​

Automated Direct Debit Amendment and Cancellation Service - ADDACS

The Bacs service allowing PSPs to advise Direct Debit service users of any amendments to or cancellations of Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs).  This is also used by other Bacs services such as the Current Account Switch Service to advise service users of the new account details when a customer transfers their account from one paying PSP to another

Automated Direct Debit Instruction Service - AUDDIS

A Bacs service enabling Direct Debit Instructions (DDI) to be electronically setup or cancelled at paying PSP's by service users.

Transaction codes used are:

  • 0N - New DDI lodged
  • 0S - Conversion of existing DDIs to AUDDIS
  • 0C - Cancellation of an existing DDI.​​
Automated Return of Unapplied Credit Service - ARUCS

​The  service allowing Receiving PSPs to return Bacs Direct Credit Payments that they could not apply.  The credit is returned to the originating account and Bacs generates a report for the service user detailing the payment that is being returned unapplied and the reason for the return

Automated Return of Unpaid Direct Debits - ARUDD

​The service allowing PSPs to return Direct Debit payments to the service user that they could not apply. The debit is returned to the service user’s account and Bacs generates a report for the service user detailing the payment that is being returned unpaid and the reason for the return​

Automated Teller Machine - ATM

A device that enables customers to withdraw cash from their accounts and/or access other services​

Bacs - Bacs Payment Schemes Limited

BPSL (Bacs) has been maintaining the integrity of payment related services since 1968, with responsibility for the schemes behind the clearing and settlement of UK automated payment methods, Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit, as well as the provision of managed services for third parties, such as the Cash ISA Transfer Service, and the Current Account Switch Service.

On 1 May 2018, Bacs became a wholly owned subsidiary of the new home for UK retail payments, the NPSO. This became Pay.UK on 18 October 2018.

The Government acknowledges that the Bacs payment system is of critical importance to the UK financial system and has confirmed that it meets the recognition criteria set out in the Banking Act 2009

See entry - 'Pay.U​K​' (formerly NPSO)​​​​

Bacs Approved Bureau - BAB

A commercial bureau awarded approved status by Bacs​​

Bacs Approved Software Service - BASS

Software solution suppliers wishing to provide Bacs connectivity packages submit their products for testing and if approved, may market themselves as suppliers of a Bacs approved solution/software​

Bacs cycle

​The Bacs cycle (three English bank working days) is the time taken for a payment instruction to be submitted to Bacs for processing and crediting or debiting the destination account. The processing cycle is as outlined below:

  • Day 1 (Input day) – Service User submits data to Bacs

  • Day 2 (Processing day) – All data accepted is processed through Bacs and passed onto the Receiving PSP's

  • Day 3 (Entry day) – The Beneficiary’s account is credited, or the payer debited, and the Service User’s account debited or credited (same day debit/credit).

​See entry - 'Warehousing of payments​'​

Also see - 'Processin​g cycle​'​

Bacs Direct Credit - BDC

​An automated credit using the Bacs service​​​

Bacs Scheme Rules and Standards

The Rules and Standards that govern the Bacs Schemes and services

Bacs Service

The service administered by Bacs relating to the automated clearing and settlement of Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credits between participants

Bacs Training Accreditation Scheme - BTAS

An accreditation service provided by Bacs to assess the relevance and quality of training course content and materials relating to Bacs services​​​​


​A service providing a highly secure access channel into Bacs. It uses internet technologies and public key infrastructure (PKI) security to allow access to Bacs payment services, including payment file processing, report accessing etc. Bacstel-IP carries out some online validation of submissions​​

Balance transfer

The transfer of a balance between the old and new accounts. The transfer of positive and negative balances is included in the switching service​

Balance Transfer Funding Limit

This is initially the minimum amount, as agreed with the customer, that the new PSP will guarantee to transfer from the new account to the old PSP to pay off all or part of a negative balance on the old account. If the new PSP will not provide funds the value will be zero​

Balance Transfer Funding Payment

The value that the new PSP calculates and pays the old PSP to reduce or repay a negative ‘closing balance’ on the old account​


Whenever the word bank appears, it refers to 'Payment Service Provider (PSP)' (previously known as bank or building society)​​​

Bank Giro Credit - BGC

A paper voucher instructing a PSP to credit a specified sum of money to a named account. A bank giro credit must be accompanied by cash or cheque. Bank giro credits are often found at the bottom of a bill​

Basic Bank Account

See entry - 'Basic PSP ​Account​​'​

Basic PSP Account

An account designed for those who may not meet a PSP's criteria for opening a standard current account. It is defined by the Office of Fair Trading as, “An account that allows consumers to pay income, benefits, cheques or cash directly into the account and withdraw cash at ATMs. Basic PSP accounts can also be used to pay bills by either Direct Debit, by transferring money to another account or by payment to a linked account. Basic PSP accounts do not offer an overdraft.”​


The person to whom the Bacs Direct Credit is intended to be paid​

Beneficiary bank

See entry - 'Beneficiar​y PSP​'

Beneficiary PSP

A PSP receiving payments for crediting to the Beneficiary’s account​

Bill Payment Arrangement

A pre-determined Beneficiary (e.g. Utility, credit card or individual person) to which the account holder can subsequently initiate payments on dates and amounts of its choosing. Bill payment Authorities are setup on PSP systems via internet or telephone banking​


​A department or office of a financial institution or PSP​​

British Bankers Association - BBA

Now amalgamated into UK Finance (UKF)​​

British Forces Post Office - BFPO

The mail address used by the British Forces Post Office (BFPO). The BFPO provides a mail service to serving British forces personnel and their families worldwide, including exercises and operations​​

Building Societies Association​​​ - BSA

Building Societies Association​​​

Bulk Change Process

The rules and processes a service user must follow when applying bulk amendments to Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs), already held with paying PSP's, in respect of a change of name, legal status, service user number or service user reference. The Bulk Change Process is supplementary to the Service User’s Guide and Rules to the Direct Debit Scheme

Bulk Payment Redirection Service - BPRS

A service that automatically redirects certain payment types (e.g. Bacs and Faster Payments), and that is primarily used to support the transfer of (typically large volumes of) accounts between PSPs​


An organisation that sends payments to Bacs on behalf of another organisation. Different categories of bureaux are:

Commercial – submitting data to Bacs on behalf of totally independent third party customers;

PSP – offering participant services direct to Service Users;

In house commercial group –  working solely for the group and submitting data to Bacs incorporating either a single organisation that has different Service User Numbers for different applications or an organisation group where each individual organisation has its own Service User Number(s); and

 Other – any Bureau not in the above categories

Business (Trading, Office) Address

Location of the business premises which may or may not be the registered or official address of an organisation and, as such, may not be public information.

Business As Usual - BAU

The default execution of standard functional operations within an organisation, particularly in contrast to a project or programme (such as the Account Switch Programme) which would introduce change

Calendar day

A day according to the Gregorian calendar, for example, 11 July 2007​​​

Cash ISA

​A savings account that allows you to earn interest tax free on cash savings​​​

Cash ISA customer

Cash ISAs – the party to the account – the account holder

Junior ISAs – the parties to the account – the account holder (the child) and a registered contact​

Cash ISA provider

An organisation that is permitted / authorised to offer customers Cash ISAs​

Ceding Cash ISA provider

The Cash ISA provider that a Cash ISA is being transferred from​

Central Redirection Table

​A central database that holds the data necessary to facilitate redirection


​See ‘DDIC Challenge’ and 'Challenge process'​

Challenge process

The process whereby a service user may, under certain circumstances, challenge an indemnity claim received from a paying PSP prior to settlement of the claim​


Clearing House Automated Payments System - a real-time gross settlement system that processes and settles systemically important and time dependent payments

Cheque & Credit Clearing Company - C&CCC

C&CCC manages the paper clearing scheme, processing cheques and bank giro credits​​

Cheques (Out and In)

Cheques drawn on the switched customer’s old account are redirected to the new bank for the pay/no pay decision (cheques-out) and the value of cheques paid into the switched customer’s old account is forwarded to the new bank (cheques-in) by FPS or CHAPS (Closed Account)​


​Method of exchange between PSP's​​​

Closing Balance

The closing balance value that the Old PSP will communicate to the New PSP for the purpose of balance transfer​

Collecting bank

See entry - 'Collecting PSP​​'​

Collecting PSP

The PSP where the cheque is deposited (i.e. paid in) and may also be the beneficiary PSP​

Collection amalgamation

Multiple or combined payments relating to more than one contract collected under a single DDI​

Commercial FM provider

An FM provider offering services to third parties for example other businesses, from sole trader to corporate entities regardless of whether charges are imposed or not​

Confirmation of Completion

Message from acquiring ISA provider to ceding Cash ISA provider to confirm that the transfer process is complete​

Consequential loss

​A loss incurred by a payer which is a consequence of the direct loss suffered as a result of an erroneous Direct Debit collection​​

Core reference

A unique reference comprising a minimum of six alpha-numeric upper case characters that is allocated by a service user to identify a Direct Debit Instruction. The core reference must be quoted in all Direct Debit collections to enable the paying PSP to match the collection with the Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs)​. Use of 'DDIC' in the first four characters of the reference must not be used. This is reserved for PSP use only

Counter claim

Counter claim means any challenges made through the challenge process

See - DDIC​​


A transaction that credits a destination account​​

Current Account

​In the context of the Current Account Switch Service, a current account is an account with sterling (GBP) as the account currency which provides the facility to receive and make payments using payments instruments such as cheques, debit cards, Direct Debits, Standing Orders and ATMs and make regular payments

Current Account Switch Service

​The service which enables consumers and small businesses to switch their PSP account and their regular payments such as Direct Debits, Standing Orders and Bill Payments from one PSP (the old PSP) to another (the new PSP).  It is a free to use service that has been designed to be simple, reliable and stress-free and is backed by the Current Account Switch Guarantee​


The account holder​

Customer Due Diligence

See - 'Know your C​ustomer​'

Day 1

See - 'Bacs ​Cycle​'​​​

Day 2

See - 'Bacs C​ycle​'​​​​​

Day 3

See - 'Bacs Cy​cle​'​​​​

DDI dormancy period

See 'Dorman​cy Period​​'​​

DDIC Challenge

A process that allows service users, in certain circumstances, to challenge the validity of an indemnity claim received


A transaction that debits a destination account​​

Debit Card

A payment card issued by a PSP which allows their clients access to their account to withdraw cash or pay for goods and services​

Deferred Net Settlement

The DNS model includes the clearing and exchange of payments between participants during a clearing cycle.At the end of this cycle, the net position of each of the direct participants is settled on a multilateral net basis i.e. a single amount is paid or received by each direct participant

Destination account

The account to which a transaction is addressed​​

Diarised Payment

A payment set up in advance of actual payment date. This includes Standing Orders and Forward Dated Payments

Direct Agency

An Agency PSP that is directly connected to a payment scheme, but is sponsored by a participant to send and receive payment transactions​

Direct Corporate Access - DCA

A facility provided for Corporates to send files of payments directly to the FPS central systems, rather than sending payments via another PSP​

Direct Debit

​A payment of an agreed amount collected from a customers account with a PSP by a service user on request. The amounts and dates may vary from payment to payment​​

Direct Debit (FCA Standardised Definition)

The customer permits someone else (recipient) to instruct the account provider to transfer money from the customer’s account to that recipient. The account provider then transfers money to the recipient on a date or dates agreed by the customer and the recipient. The amount may vary

Direct Debit Guarantee

​​The guarantee offered by PSP's to payers in respect of the Direct Debit Scheme specifying their rights and safeguards​​

Direct Debit Indemnity Claim - DDIC

Direct Debit Indemnity Claim

See - 'Ind​emnity claim​'​​

Direct Debit Instruction - DDI

An authority (paper, AUDDIS or PDD) from the customer allowing the service user to collect Direct Debit payments from their account​

Direct Debit Originator database - DDO

A database of Direct Debit service users including e.g. service user contact details, advance notice period, dormancy period, AUDDIS status​

Direct Debit Reference

See - 'Reference a​nd Core Reference​​'

Direct Debiting Scheme Guides & Rules

See - 'Guid​e and Rules​'

Direct Participant

A clearing and settlement participant in Bacs​​

Disabled Account

An account with limited functionality such that closure can be facilitated after the clearance of any uncleared transactions and the settlement of any negative balance.  In the context of the Current Account Switch Service this is the closure of the account from the customer’s perspective (as compared to Closed Account)​

Dormancy period

The time after which a PSP will look to remove details of Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs)​ from a payer’s account if no collections have been made in that time. The default period is normally 13 months* and is recorded against a Direct Debit Service User Number (SUN) on the Direct Debit service user's database (DDO)

​​*This has been temporarily increased to 24 months to minimise the impact of payment holidays during the Covid-19 pandemic
Due date

The date on which a Direct Debit collection is due to be taken

See - 'Paym​ent date​'

Electronic Funds Transfer – File structures

The document, which details the technical specification and file formats for file submission to Bacs​


​The Electronic Money Regulations 2011

Enabled Account

An account that is open and is able to accept credit and debit transactions

Enhanced Transmission Service - ETS

A connectivity channel for PSP's, large organisations and government departments. It is designed to carry data swiftly, securely and in large volumes​

Entry day (day 3)

​See - 'B​acs cycle​​​'

Expiry (DDI)

When a Direct Debit Instruction has expired

Also see - 'Notice of Expiry and Dorm​ancy Period​​​'​​

Extended Industry Sorting Code Directory) / ISCD (Industry Sorting Code Directory - EISCD

The EISCD and ISCD are directories that combine a number of key databases.  They contain information about all PSP's connected to any of the UK clearing systems: Bacs, CHAPS amd Cheque and Credit Clearing. The directories contain a record for each PSP branch and other financial institutions involved in the UK payment systems. They include the sorting code, branch details and details of the PSP that settles transactions for the branch in each of the clearings. New subscribers will receive the EISCD which includes further fields in its information relating to the Faster Payments Service​​ and the Image Clearing System. The ISCD is available to existing subscribers only​

eXtensible Markup Language - XML

XML is a widely used system for defining complex data structures in such a way that it becomes easier to manage and exchange between applications​​

Facilities Management

In the context of the Direct Debit Scheme, a service user (FM provider) or bureau that takes responsibility for the collection or administration of Direct Debits on behalf of another business that may not be a service user in its own right (FM client)​

Facilities management (FM) client

​A business that has not been sponsored into the Direct Debit Scheme by their PSP and therefore does not have a service user number (SUN) and engages the services of a Facilities Management (FM) provider to collect and administer Direct Debits on their behalf​

Facilities management (FM) provider

​An organisation that acts as a service user for those businesses that do not have their own service user number (SUN) to collect and administer Direct Debits on their behalf​


​Frequently asked questions - documents listing and answering the most common questions on a particular subject​​​

Faster Payments Service - FPS

The Faster Payments Service allows customers to make faster electronic payments, typically by phone or online banking, to transfer money between accounts or pay bills, or make regular standing order payments


​Field of a data record

See - 'Field 9​', 'Field 10', 'Field ​11'​​​​

Field 10

​Contains the reference (maximum of 18 characters) applied to the Bacs Direct Credit or Direct Debit transaction by the service user when it is sent to the receiving PSP. This is a critical field for both credits and debits allowing the recipient to identify what the payment relates to​​

Field 11

Contains the destination account name (maximum of 18 characters). For Direct Debits this must be the name of the person who is paying the Direct Debit and has authorised the Direct Debit Instruction (DDI)​

Field 9

Contains the Originating account name.  In the case of Direct Debit, this is the short name of the service user (maximum of 18 characters) which appears in the Direct Debit payment record and may appear on the payer’s PSP statement​​​

Field 9, 10 and 11

See - 'Fie​ld 9​', 'Field 10', 'Field ​11'​​​​​​​​


​A self balancing set of records from a service user​

File Transfer Protocol - FTP

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard Internet protocol for transmitting files between computers on the Internet over TCP/IP connections.  

Also see - 'TC​P/IP​​​​'​

Flexible Cash ISA

A Cash ISA which allows withdrawals to be replenished back into an ISA during the same tax year

Forward Dated Payment - FDP

Forward Dated Payments (FDPs) are payments set up by a customer for execution at a later time or date. They include ‘timed’ payments for the same day where the customer is not in attendance at the time the payment is made. FDPs include all one-off payments where the customer is not expecting to have information from the Direct Receiver made available regarding the fate of the payment. There are two processing steps for an FDP – set-up and execution. The payment is not submitted to Central Infrastructure until the date or time at which the payment is to be made. Forward Dated Payments are also referred to, collectively with Standing Orders, as Diarised Payments


Individual transactions that would be credited to the old account after the completion of the switch, are forwarded to the new account by the old PSP, using FPS where possible (otherwise CHAPS), and will contain the original payment reference

Garnishee order

See - 'Third part​y debt order​'​


The Guide and Rules to the various Bacs schemes​

Guides & Rules

The rules that apply to the operation and use of the Scheme and the Bacs Service as amended from time to time by Bacs​

Hyper Text Mark-up Language - HTML

A scripting language​

HyperText Transfer Protocol - HTTP

The set of rules for transferring files on the World Wide Web

Indefinite Redirection

Often used as shorthand for "indefinite redirection and forwarding for impacted customers" which is where:

Central redirection of Bacs and Faster Payments continues on an ongoing basis for impacted customers. An impacted customer is a CASS customer who has switched but for who one or more payment originators have not updated the account details that they hold, and who is therefore having regular payments centrally redirected towards the end of, and sometimes beyond, the minimum three year redirection period. Participant forwarding for each switch remains aligned to central redirection​​


A document under the Direct Debit Scheme that contains a legally binding undertaking to make payment to any paying PSP in response to an indemnity claim. An indemnity, in standard form, is an essential requirement of the Direct Debit Scheme​

Indemnity claim

​A claim made by the paying PSP in respect of an incorrect Direct Debit being applied to an account​​

Indirect Agency

An Agency Financial Institution that is not directly connected to a payment scheme, and instead submits and receives transactions via one or more PSPs​

Indirect clearer

An institution which:  (a) provides Bacs payments services to third parties under the sponsorship of a participant and  (b) has entered into a sponsorship arrangement with the participant referred to in (a) above​

Indirect Participant

A participant who is 'sponsored' and uses a Direct Participant for clearing and settlement in Bacs​

Industry sector

​An area of business such as a market sector, for example, the insurance market​

Innovative Finance ISA providers

An organisation that is permitted / authorised to offer customers Innovative Finance (IF) ISAs​​


Files of payments sent into Bacs for processing

Also see - 'Ou​tput​'​​​​​

Input day (Day 1)

​See - 'Bac​s cycle'

Input deadline

​Time by which a Bacs transmission must be completed (22.30) if the items are to be processed on the following processing day​​​

Input report

The confirmation of processing of an organisation's file available to the service user on input day​​​


See - 'Direct Debit Instructi​on (DDI)'​​​​​

Integrated Services Digital Network - ISDN

​A communications technology used to transmit relatively high speed digital data through a single channel over telephone lines​​​

Internal Transfer

Payment arrangements between accounts operated by the same customer within the same PSP (e.g. a payment arrangement for an account holder to regularly debit their current account to pay into their saving account that is held at the same PSP)​

Internet Protocol - IP

​A set of computer technologies that enable many computers to exchange information reliably and efficiently worldwide​​


​Individual Savings Account​

ISA provider

An organisation that is permitted / authorised to offer customers an Individual Savings Account

ISCD / EISCD (Industry Sorting Code Directory / Extended Industry Sorting Code Directory)

The ISCD and EISCD are directories that combine a number of key databases.  They contain information about all PSP's connected to any of the UK clearing systems: Bacs, CHAPS and Cheque and Credit Clearing. The directories contain a record for each PSP branch and other financial institutions involved in the UK payment systems. They include the sorting code, branch details and details of the PSP that settles transactions for the branch in each of the clearings. New subscribers will receive the EISCD which includes further fields in its information relating to the Faster Payments Service​​ and the Image Clearing System. The ISCD is available to existing subscribers only​​


​A term used to describe a single Bacs transaction​

Item limit

​A ceiling monetary amount, requested by a service user, to be set against individual items. When the limit is exceeded, the record is noted on the input report​

Joint Owner

The co-owner of the account when the ownership is assigned to more than one party

Julian date

​Julian dates run serially throughout the year. 1 January is always 001 and 31 December is 365 (366 if a leap year)​

Junior Cash ISA

A Cash ISA available to those customers less than 18 years of age​

Know your customer - KYC

The due diligence and regulation that PSPs must perform to identify their clients and ascertain relevant information pertinent to doing financial business with them​

Legal entity

A Service User must be either a legal person (natural or corporate or, in Scotland only, a partnership) or exceptionally a collection of persons governed by a defined legal framework (such as a partnership or unincorporated association). These are referred to as legal entities. A group of companies is not a legal entity, unless they are formally constituted as a partnership. A ‘group holding company’ will be a legal entity​

Letter of nomination

A formal letter by an agency PSP to its sponsor nominating one of its customers as a service user

See section 2A.1 of the Service User's Guide and Rules of the Direct Debit Scheme​​

Limit value

A financial limit agreed with the sponsoring PSP on an individual account to restrict the value passing through that account for a fixed period​​

Live DDI

Live Direct Debit Instruction is one that is not expired, has not been cancelled by any party or become dormant as a result of the dormancy period

Live status

​An organisation or bureau, who has successfully submitted test files and has been authorised by their sponsoring PSP to submit live files to Bacs​​​

Lodgement (Lodged)

​The process of the paying PSP accepting the Direct Debit Instruction (DDI)​​

Management Administration

A service user may contract an organisation to manage its Direct Debit application. However, the service user must take full responsibility for the actions of the other organisation on their behalf​

Management Information - MI

Reports which summarise data for statistical, performance or other purposes; produced for the owners (rather than the users) of a system


Has the same meaning as 'Standing Or​der Mandate​'


See entry - 'Parti​cipant​'​

Migration (AUDDIS)

​The process by which a Direct Debit Service User transfers non AUDDIS Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs) to the AUDDIS system

See - 'AUD​DIS​'

Modulus checking

An arithmetical process to determine if there is a valid link between a sorting code and an account number range, i.e. whether a particular account number could exist at a specified sorting code​​

Multi-Banked Customer

A customer who has an account at more than one PSP​

National Insurance Number​​ - NINO

National Insurance Number​​

New Account

The new account to which the switch will be made (destination account)

New Bank

See entry - 'New ​PSP​​​'​​

New Debit Card

The debit card associated with the new account

New Payment System Operator - NPSO

The leading retail payments authority in the UK – formerly known as the New Payment System Operator / NPSO – was rebranded Pay.UK on 18 October 2018 

See - 'Pa​y.UK​'​


The PSP holding the account to which the switch will be made i.e. the acquiring PSP​

New Service User

The 'new' service user in the Bulk Change process who is responsible for collecting the direct debit payments after the bulk change has taken place (in some cases the legal identity of the service user will remain the same)

See - 'Bulk C​hange Process​​'​

Nominated account

A PSP account from which a service user can originate payment instructions. The nominated account can be an individual account or a group individual account​


The term given to direct debits which are lodged in paper form​

Non Bank Payment Service Provider

The Payment Services Regulations 2017 introduced a class of firms, which are not traditional banks, authorised to provide payment services.  These include: money remitters, certain network operators offering payment services, non bank credit card issuers, merchant acquiring firms, payment initiation service providers and account information service providers​

Notice of expiry

Shall be deemed to have been given if the service user identifies the final collection under the expiring Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs)​ by use of transaction code 19

See - 'Ex​piry​'

Notification of Abandonment

Message from acquiring ISA provider to ceding Cash ISA provider to notify that the transfer has been abandoned for a specified reason. This message is only valid PRIOR to payment​

Notification of Failure

Message from acquiring ISA provider to ceding Cash ISA provider to notify that the transfer has failed for a specified reason. This message is only valid POST payment

Notification of Pend

Message from ceding Cash ISA provider to acquiring ISA provider that accepts a transfer request but notifies the acquiring ISA provider that the transfer cannot commence until a specified date as, for example, the account is fixed term or notice and the customer has not agreed to pay the penalty, or the product is a structured Cash ISA with fixed price/periodic exit dates

Notification of Referral

Message from ceding Cash ISA provider to acquiring ISA provider to notify that the transfer has been referred to the customer​

Offline Transaction

Transactions where no authorisation is sought before settlement is requested, including contactless, under floor limit or transactions where authorisation was not obtained by the merchant. Offline transactions equate to c.2.5% of Debit Card transactions

Old Account

The account held at the old PSP being switched to the new PSP​

Old Bank

See - 'Old​ PSP​​​'

Old Debit Card

The Debit Card associated with the old account


The PSP holding the old account that is to be switched to the new PSP i.e. the ceding PSP​

Old Service User

The old service user in the Bulk Change Process who is responsible for collecting Direct Debit payments before the bulk change (in some cases the legal identity of the service user will remain the same)​

On or immediately after

​On or within three bank working days of the specified payment date given in the advance notice​

Online Authorisation

A process where a merchant requests an Issuer, an Authorising Processor, or Stand-In Processing to approve a Transaction. This includes domestic and international transactions. The response to the request may be an approval, a decline, a pickup or a referral response

Online Transaction

Transactions where authorisation is sought before settlement is requested, including ecommerce (web-based CNP), card held on file, POS or ATM. Online transactions equate to c.97% of Debit Card transactions

Originating account

​The account from which a payment originates​


See - 'Servi​ce User​'​

Originator’s Identification Number - OIN

See - 'Servi​ce User Number​'​​​


Payments received by a PSP from Bacs for processing​


​Referral of a file, which exceeds the limit for the nominated account set up by the sponsor​

Paper vouchers

The ‘vouchers’ downloaded from the Payment Services Website (or from sponsors as appropriate) for agencies that do not have a direct output stream and hence cannot receive AUDDIS transactions, e.g., 0Ns electronically​

Partial Switch

A switch that provides customers with flexibility over which payment arrangements are transferred.  A partial switch is performed using a subset of the Account Switching Service, which enables the transfer of some types of accounts that cannot be transferred using the Current Account Switch Service.  A partial switch is not backed by a customer guarantee.  ​


An organisation that participates in one of the payment schemes​

Participants of the Direct Debit Scheme

These are: The sponsor, the service user and the payers PSP​

Participating Account

A current account where, in line with the Payment Services Regulations, the account party is either:

  • A consumer
  • An SME with an annual turnover and/or balance sheet total does not exceed £6.5 million and employs fewer than 50 people  
  • A small charity with an annual income of less than £6.5 million
  • A small trust with a net asset value of less than £6.5 million.​
Participating Institutions

Any of the following which participate in the service:

  • Banks
  • Building societies
  • Other providers of payments accounts which may be (1) authorised payment institutions or small payment institutions under the PSRs or (2) electronic money institutions under the EMRs.​

Pay.UK is the recognised operator and standards body for the UK’s retail interbank payment systems. Pay.UK became the responsible operator of the Bacs Direct Credit and Direct Debit payment systems on 1 May 2018 when Bacs Payment Schemes Limited simultaneously became a wholly owned subsidiary of Pay.UK. 

References to "Bacs" and "Pay.UK" are used interchangeably.​


The individual or organisation receiving the transaction and whose account is being credited


​The person who by providing a Direct Debit Instruction (DDI) has given authority for his / her account to be debited by the service user using the Direct Debit Scheme​​​

Payers branch

The paying PSP branch holding the payers account to be debited​​

Paying bank

See - 'Payin​g PSP​'​

Paying PSP

​The PSP maintaining the payers account including lodging Direct Debit Instructions (DDI) and sending messages to advise of amendments or cancellations​​

Payment Account

An account held in the name of one or more payment service users which is used for the execution of payment transactions

Payment Arrangements

Live Direct Debit Instructions (DDIs), Standing Order mandates, bill payment authorities and internal transfers​

Payment date

​The date when a Direct Debit is due to be debited to the payers account​

Payment file

A file submitted to the service that contains payment instructions​

Payment instruction

A data record detailing the amount and account to be debited (for Direct Debit) or credited (for Bacs Direct Credit, Faster Payment or CHAPS)

Payment Service Provider - PSP

An institution which offers payment services to customers, whether they are businesses or retail consumers. Includes banks, building societies, e-money institutions and payment institutions. As defined in the Payment Services Regulations 2017

Payment Services Regulations - PSR

Payment Services Regulations 2017​

Payment Services Website - PSW

Bacs' operational website that enables PSPs and service users to interact by uploading and downloading information, viewing reports and the status of submissions​

Payment Systems Regulator - PSR

The economic regulator launched 1st April 2015 is a subsidiary of the FCA.  Its vision is to ensure that payment systems are accessible, reliable, secure and value for money​

Payment Transfer Date

The date on which the new PSP takes on responsibility for making a Standing Order payment for a Partial Switch​

Power of Attorney - PoA

A power of attorney (PoA) is a written authorisation to represent or act on another’s behalf in private affairs, business, or some other legal matter. The person authorising the other to act is the donor or granter, and the one authorised to act is the donee or attorney. A power of attorney is only valid while the donor has the capacity to ratify the attorney’s actions, unless it is made in the form of a lasting power of attorney and registered with the Office of the Public Guardian


​People who prefer to use Direct Debit for most of their bills​

Primary Account Number - PAN

The cardholder number (up to nineteen digits) which is usually embossed on a card and is linked to the cardholder's account and is used to identify where the transaction funds should be transferred to or from

Primary Security Contact - PSC

An individual registered on payment services and allocated privileges and a security method e.g. PKI

Proceeds of Crime Act - PoCA

​Proceeds of Crime Act (2002)​​

Process owners

The process owners for Cash ISAs are UKF (formerly BBA), BSA & TISA jointly​​

Processing cycle

The minimum time taken for a payment instruction to be submitted to Bacs for processing and the time it reaches the destination account. The processing cycle has four stages: arrival, input, processing and entry

See - 'Three-d​ay cycle​'​​

Processing day (day 2)

​See - 'Bacs ​cycle'​​​


A participant acting as the agent of another participant that provides Authorisation, Clearing, or Settlement services for Merchants and PSPs​

Public Key Infrastructure - PKI

PKI is a computer technology for secure exchange of information amongst individuals and computer systems. It allows a trusted organisation, such as a PSP, to issue digital certificates to people and organisations that need to trust each other. It is generally used in conjunction with Internet protocol (IP). The certificates are used by their holders to prove their identity. They can also digitally sign documents and transactions. The signature proves the authenticity of the transaction and also proves that the data exchanged has not been modified or tampered with. Digital signatures are now acceptable in a court of law. The same technology is also used to encrypt data in transit so nobody other than the intended recipient can read it​​


​A Direct Debit that has been returned unpaid to the service user being resubmitted for payment​​

Ready for payment

Message from acquiring ISA provider to ceding Cash ISA provider to confirm that the payment may be initiated​

Real Time Gross Settlement - RTGS

A model for settlement where each transaction is settled individually in real time.  CHAPS is the only interbank payment scheme to use this settlement model in the UK​

Recalling Bank

See entry - 'Recalling​ PSP​​'​

Recalling PSP

A PSP recalling a Bacs Direct Credit payment

Receiving account

​Also referred to as destination account​

Receiving Bank

See entry - 'Receiving​ PSP​'​​​

Receiving Organisation

See entry - 'Receiv​ing PSP​'​​​​

Receiving PSP

A PSP receiving payments for crediting the beneficiary or debiting the payer’s account​


In Bacs terms, a record corresponds to a credit or debit transaction​​


A Bacs (Direct Debit, AUDDIS message and Bacs Direct Credit) or Faster Payment (Credit) transaction that is destined for the old account but is redirected to the new account via a central service​

Redirection Service

Used generically to refer to the service that facilitates redirection for Bacs and FPS payments.  Each of these services receives a redirection lookup feed of active switch data from the central redirection table


The characters allocated by a service user to each individual Bacs Direct Credit, Direct Debit Instruction (DDI) and Direct Debit

See - 'Core re​ference​'​

Refund request

​A claim made by a paying PSP for a refund from the service user that is not covered by the valid Direct Debit indemnity claim criteria. This would occur following an error on the part of the paying PSP e.g. the PSP fails to action a Direct Debit cancellation and makes the payment. Settlement of the refund request is at the discretion of the service user

Registered address

The legal address (which may be different to the business address) of an organisation that is entered in the official register of the registrar of companies, and to which all government and court communication is addressed. The location of this office must be in the jurisdiction in which the firm is registered

Registered name

The name of the company as registered at Companies House​

Registered trading name

A trading name registered at Bacs for use under the Direct Debit Scheme


A Service User or Bureau using the Bacs Service to make Bacs Direct Credit payments; may also be referred to as a Submitter or Remitting Organisation

Remitting bank

See entry - 'Remi​tting PSP​'​​

Remitting PSP

A PSP making electronic payments directly into accounts held with other PSPs

Returned unpaid

When the paying PSP is unwilling to pay a Direct Debit collection or cheque, it will be returned unpaid. There are a number of reasons why this may happen, including insufficient funds, fraud, wrongly dated or unsigned

See - 'ARUDD for un​paid Direct Debit collections​​'


The Rules that apply to the operation and use of the Scheme and the Bacs Service, as amended from time to time by Bacs


The Schemes for Bacs Direct Credits and Direct Debits

Secondary owner

The entity that is not the primary owner when the ownership of the account is split among several parties


​People who are selective about their use of Direct Debit and use it for only some of their bills​

Service name

A generic name used by an organisation which describes the service offered. This name may differ from the Service User’s Registered Name or Trading Name, e.g. ’Budget plan’

Service user

A company, group of companies, charity etc. that is sponsored to use one or more Bacs service. A service user may also be referred to as a payee/submitter/remitter. A Service User may be a PSP

Also see - 'Legal ​entity​'​​

Service user guide Bacstel-IP

​The technical specification for submission to Bacs​

Service user number - SUN

​The unique six digit number allocated to organisations authorised to use the Bacs service​


The movement of money across Bank of England Settlement Accounts to net off obligations between scheme participants

Settlement Member

Direct participants of the various UK clearing systems who settle obligations with each other arising from the payment transactions made​

Short name

Shortened version of the service user’s name as annotated in field 9 of the data record

Also see - 'Fi​eld 9​'​​


Where signed is used in relation to the CASS Customer Agreement, this refers to obtaining the customer’s consent e.g. wet signature or captured online

Single payment

A single payment which in the case of Direct Debit will only be collected once. Only permitted for AUDDIS service users​​

Small or Medium Sized Enterprise - SME

​An enterprise which: employs fewer than 50 people and has an annual turnover that does not exceed £6.5 million

Solution suppliers

A Bacs solution supplier is a company providing Bacs approved software solutions to businesses wishing to access the Bacs service. Solutions include Bacstel-IP software and hardware packages, mailbox services for Bacs reports and total management solutions to handle and run Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit systems

See - 'BASS - Bacs Approved​ Software Service​​​'

Sort code directory

​A register of valid Bacs sort codes maintained by PSP's. This information may be held by service users to check a payers branch sort code​​​

Sorting code

​A six digit code uniquely identifying the office where an account is held​​

Source Reference

A reference on the forwarded payment that allows the customer to identify and reconcile the original transaction on the Old Account

Sponsor / sponsoring bank

See entry - 'Sponsor/Spon​soring PSP​​'​​​​

Sponsor / Sponsoring PSP

A Bacs participant authorising organisations and bureaux to submit data for processing


See entry - 'Sponsor/Sp​onsoring PSP​'​​​​​

Standard 18

The Bacs standard file/record format used by the Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit schemes

Standing order

A payment of a fixed amount on specified regular dates to a named individual or organisation​​

Standing Order (FCA Standardised Definition)

The account provider makes regular transfers, on the instruction of the customer, of a fixed amount of money from the customer’s account to another account​​​

Standing Order File Amendment - SOFA

A facility provided to ensure that Standing Order systems contain up to date Beneficiary details​

Standing Order mandate

The authority from a customer to their PSP to make a payment of a fixed amount on specified regular dates to a named individual or organisation​​

Stocks and Shares ISA provider

An organisation that it permitted / authorised to offer customers Stocks and Shares ISAs​


A Service User using the Bacs Service to make Direct Debit or Bacs Direct Credit payments; may also be referred to as a Remitter​

SWIFTNet Transmission Service - STS

An high-speed bulk transmission channel that uses SWIFT's strategic messaging​

Switch date

The day on which a full account switch will complete from the customer’s perspective. Normally this is working day 7 in the full account switch process

See - 'Working​ Days​'​​

Tax Incentivised Saving Association​ - TISA

Tax Incentivised Saving Association​

Technical Rejection

Technical Rejection Message is generated by the Service that is used to provide a rejection response to input messages when the message cannot be processed or fails validation

Termination date

The date on which the new bank sends a Terminate Switch message to stop the processing of a switch and transaction redirection associated with the switch

The Financial Conduct Authority - FCA

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is the conduct regulator for 58,000 financial services firms and financial markets in the UK and the prudential regulator for over 18,000 of those firms​​

The Paying PSP's Guide and Rules to the Direct Debit Scheme

The Guide expands on the paying PSP responsibilities to ensure they are aware and have an understanding of their responsibilities when accepting Direct Debit Instructions and processing subsequent collections from service

The Service User’s Guide and Rules to the Direct Debit Scheme

A document intended for service users who are required to apply the Rules of the Direct Debit Scheme and operate within the set procedures as defined​

Third party debt order

An order of an English, Welsh or Northern Irish court addressed to a PSP to pay money from a debtors account to a judgement creditor in satisfaction of a judgement debt​ (formerly known as a Garnishee Order)​

Three day cycle

See - 'Bacs C​ycle​'​​

Trading name

​A name under which a company conducts its business. This name may differ from the service user’s registered name​

Transaction code

​A series of codes used in connection with transactions processed via Bacs determining the type of transaction, for example, for Direct Debits - 01,17,18, 19 and AUDDIS Instruction 0N, 0C, 0S​​

Transaction code 01

The code used in connection with transactions processed via Bacs to determine that the Direct Debit payment is the first collection made under the DDI

Transaction code 17

The code used in connection with transactions processed via Bacs to determine that the Direct Debit payment is for a subsequent collection

Transaction code 18

The code used in connection with transactions processed via Bacs to determine that the Direct Debit payment has been represented for payment

Transaction code 19

The code used in connection with transactions processed via Bacs to determine that the Direct Debit payment is the final collection to be made under the DDI (the use of this transaction code advises the PSP to delete the DDI from its records and may also result in a 'final collection' message appearing on bank statements)

Transfer Date

The transfer date is the calendar date on or after which the new PSP will take on the responsibility for making payments for a particular Standing Order. The old PSP is responsible for any payments before, but not on or after, the transfer date​

Transfer Request

Message from acquiring ISA provider to ceding Cash ISA provider that initiates the Cash ISA transfer process​

Transferable Payment Arrangements

Payment arrangements from the Old account that can be automatically transferred to the New Account. Some Payment Arrangements cannot be automatically transferred (e.g. an Internal Transfer to a Mortgage where the condition of the Mortgage was a payment from an Old PSP current account or an Internal Transfer to a savings account where no DD has been set up)

Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol - TCP/IP

A suite of communication protocols used to interconnect network devices on the internet

UK address

A postal address in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, or the Crown dependencies of Guernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Man

UK Finance - UKF

​UK Finance trade body for the finance industry which includes what was the British Bankers Association

See - 'B​BA​'​​

Unique Reference Number - URN

A unique reference, comprising numeric and/or alpha characters, that links a transfer request for CASS or Cash ISA and all subsequent related messages, including payments

United Kingdom - UK

For the purpose of the Scheme, the United Kingdom (UK) comprises England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

Unpaid Direct Debit

A Direct Debit that is returned uncollected by the paying PSP, for example, insufficient funds​

See - 'Automated Return of Unpaid Dir​ect Debits (ARRUD)'​

Unpaid Direct Debit reason codes

A series of codes used to denote the reason for returning a Direct Debit unpaid via Bacs (ARUDD)​

Verify / Verification

Confirm/match the details of the account holder (and registered contact where appropriate) provided by the acquiring ISA provider, for example by matching to the ceding Cash ISA provider’s records and / or contacting the account holder (and registered contact where appropriate) directly.  The term can also be used to verify the payers details in the Direct Debit Scheme​


Vocalink is the commercial company that physically processes the Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit payments, and maintains the payment network. Vocalink’s products and services make all kinds of data transactions significantly more accessible to PSPs, governments and businesses​​

Warehousing of payments

Bacs Direct Credit and Direct Debit payments can be submitted to Bacs up to 30 days ahead of the processing day.  They are held or 'warehoused' until the relevant input day of the payment​

Working days

For the purposes of the Scheme, working days are defined as English PSP working days excluding Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays​​

Zero account number advice

A paper advisory slip generated by Bacs and completed by the destination PSP to inform a service user of the correct destination account number to use in the future. It is produced if a payment instruction fails validation of the destination account number and is in turn set to all zeros by Bacs.

With effect from 1 January 2010 paying PSPs send these advices electronically via ADDACS

Information Hub

Info Hub

Our search facility will help you find everything you need. To search for documents enter your search requirements above

Not registered yet?

Some areas and assets are password protected and only available to eligible registered users. To gain access to all the information you need register for your password and log in first every visit