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Levying your customers: can you impose it?

Levying your customers: can you impose it?

Temps de lecture : 2 minutes

Collecting customers is common practice, especially with the SEPA standard appeared in 2014 . But can we really demand it? This question raises important issues for commercial transactions.

Can you force a customer to pay by direct debit?

No, no customer can be ordered to make a direct debit. Their agreement is required by means of a mandate. This specifies the terms of the direct debit (date, frequency and amount) and the identity of the debtor and creditor.

Can you impose a payment method on your customers?

No, it is considered a abusive practice from force a specific payment method because it creates a breach of equality . According to a Commission for the Examination of Commercial Practices (CEPC) dated March 31, the choice of payment method must be freely negotiated between the parties .

Imposing a payment method such as direct debit can constitute a significant imbalance between the rights and obligations of the parties . This is based on a ruling by the Lille Commercial Court on January 6, 2010, which deemed such a practice to be abusive when ordered unilaterally without the possibility of negotiation (CEPC Opinion no. 17-6 on the imposition of a method of payment).

However, it is possible to refuse a payment method proposed by a customer . For example, a merchant may refuse payment by cheque and request a bank transfer or credit card payment instead.

The addition of a clause restricting direct debit in the General Terms and Conditions of Use (GTCU) is considered abusive . This goes against the principle of free negotiation of payment methods between the parties.

Direct debit clauses must comply with the balance of rights and obligations between supplier and customer . A clause that unilaterally imposes sampling without mutual consent or discussion may be challenged by public authorities.

How do I set up a direct debit?

Make a direct debit involves several key stages:

  1. Obtain authorization with a direct debit mandate signed by the debtor ;

  2. Ask your bank for a unique SEPA creditor identifier;

  3. Define the terms with your bank for issuing direct debits;

  4. Assign a unique mandate reference (RUM) for each customer;

  5. Informer your customer at least 14 days before each withdrawal.

What should I do if my direct debit is rejected?

In the event of a direct debit rejection, it is essential to contact the customer to understand the situation . A rejection may be due to a technical problem, lack of cash flow, or other reasons.

If the customer is unreachable, send him an email detailing the problem and indicating the next collection attempt . This maintains clear communication and gives the customer the opportunity to solve the problem.

In the event of repeated failures and if the invoice due date has passed, initiate collection proceedings . This may include :

  • From formal reminders ;

  • From late fees ;

  • L' intervention of a collection agency .

How do I refuse a direct debit?

Refusing a direct debit is a customer right . To do this, the customer must contact your bank et request revocation of the direct debit mandate . This revocation can be temporary ou final according to customer requirements.

It is also possible to cancel a direct debit directly with the creditor . This can be done by registered letter or electronic communication, clearly stating the intention to stop direct debits.

What is late rejection?

Late rejection occurs when the customer's bank refuses a direct debit after the scheduled payment date . This may be due to a lack of funds or an error in the withdrawal instructions.

Late rejection can incur additional costs and requires rapid communication between customer and creditor to find a solution.

What's the difference between a direct debit and a mandatory direct debit?

Direct debits are transactions agreed between a debtor and a creditor where the debtor authorizes the creditor to withdraw funds from its account at regular intervals . This generally concerns payments for services or goods.

Compulsory levies refer to taxes et state-imposed contributions like the taxes or the social security contributions . These direct debits are levied by various authorities and, unlike direct debits, are not negotiable or optional.

What's the alternative to direct debit to reduce overdue payments?

To effectively reduce overdue payments without relying entirely on direct debit, Hero offers an innovative solution. Our services, such as Hero Cash These solutions enable companies to benefit from immediate payment while offering their customers the flexibility to pay at a later date.

This approach improves cash flow management and minimizes the risk of non-payment. By offering flexible and secure payment options, Hero is positioned as an advantageous alternative for collect from customers efficiently.

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Frequently asked question:

What is a direct debit?

A direct debit is a money transfer authorized by the debtor, where the creditor takes the sum directly from the debtor's account on agreed dates.

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Écrit par

Valentin Orru

Head of growth

23/07/2024