Government backs efforts to tackle problem of late payments

SBEF Aims To Tackle Problem of Late Payments | Middletons Solicitors | Hampshire Solicitors 

The Government is backing efforts by the Small Business Economic Forum (SBEF) to tackle the ongoing problem of late payment of invoices.

Ministers are urging companies to sign up to the Government Prompt Payment Code. So far, more than 1,100 businesses have done so. They represent an estimated 60% of the total UK supply chain value.

Members of the SBEF have all signed an agreement to work together to develop new measures to ensure that payments are secured and made on time.

The statement encourages its members to:

• Agree payment terms before delivering orders
• Use electronic invoicing
• Raise Complaints when companies who have signed the Prompt Payment Code are guilty of late payment
• Use legislation to pursue late payers

Philip King, Chief Executive of the Institute of Credit Management, which administers the code, said: “Suppliers should not be bullied into accepting unfavourable terms from their customers, and should negotiate payment as part of the bigger trading relationship.”

”Phil Orford, Chief Executive of the Forum of Private Business, said: “Late payment forces businesses to close, plain and simple. Ensuring small firms are paid on time and in full is key to their future growth and prosperity, and also to the UK’s economic prospects.”

The Government is hoping the code will help businesses get into the habit of paying suppliers on time.

Mark Prisk, who is the Business and Enterprise Minister, and Chair of the SBEF, said: “Working with industry bodies to encourage their members to sign the Prompt Payment Code and commit to making payments on time is a significant step forward. We mustn’t be complacent and stop here but I hope to see businesses across the country joining us to help ensure payments are reaching suppliers on time.”

Please contact us in our Warminster office on 01985 214444 or Westbury on 01373 865577 if you would like more information about debt collection and credit control management.