Businesses and other organisations here that use a UK based payment service provider to process direct debits are being urged to check they are ready for important changes that will apply after January 1. 
According to the Banking and Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI), if they want to ensure smooth and uninterrupted continuation of the processing of their direct debits following Brexit, certain businesses must take action now. 

The organisation estimates that as many as 140,000 recurring direct debits are at risk after the UK becomes a third country when the Brexit transition period comes to end. 

"A wide range of businesses in Ireland, from utility companies to membership organisations, use Payment Service Providers (PSPs) based in the UK to process the direct debits of their customers," said Brian Hayes, chief executive of the BPFI.

"However, when the Brexit transition period ends on December 31, businesses must ensure that any additional information required is added to the direct debit transactions provided to the UK based PSP so as to ensure the seamless processing of direct debits between the UK and Ireland," Mr Hayes said.

"The information typically required will be the address of a customer," he added. 

BPFI thinks 80% of impacted transactions meet the new requirements, but has advised that organisations and businesses behind the remaining ones need to act now. 

If they do not then they risk a scenario where banks will be forced to reject consumers' direct debits from the start of next year. 

"In recent months BPFI has written to over 150 businesses and organisations, who use a UK-based PSP, encouraging them to provide the necessary additional information on their direct debit transactions," Mr Hayes added. 

"In parallel, BPFI and our members have been actively engaged with the relevant UK PSPs to ensure the required engagement with their business customers in Ireland." 

The federation has urged anyone who has concerns or needs more information about this matter to contact their payment service provider.