06 Aug 2020 | Posted In Money advice news

We’re pleased to announce that Helen Deller of TV Licensing will be joining us at this week’s MALG Friday Forum to share details of the Simple Payment Plan with our members.

TV Licensing’s Simple Payment Plan was created for those in financial difficulty. It’s TVL’s most affordable plan and by referring your clients, advisers can help them stay licensed, as payments work out at around £3 a week. Following a successful trial starting in 2018, the scheme has now been permanently introduced.

How does the Simple Payment Plan work?

  • Your clients can choose from either a fortnightly or monthly payment plan. If they stick to the plan, payments will average out at around £3 a week.
  • Clients can spread the cost of the TV Licence over 12 months. Normally people would be required to pay for their first licence in six months.
  • Missed payments (arrears) can be spread over the remaining months, rather than having to pay double in the following month.
  • If a client misses three months or six fortnightly payments consecutively, their SPP licence will be cancelled. They may be invited to re-join, but their licence may be short-dated.
  • So it is in your clients’ best interests to make payments in full and in time.

How to pay

Automatic payments: Your clients can get payments taken from their bank account every month by setting up a Direct Debit. Or they can set up a Continuous Payment Authority (CPA), and get payments taken every month or every two weeks from their debit or credit card.

Manual payments:  Your clients can also pay over the counter at any PayPoint location, via the website, over the phone, or via a Paythru link issued via SMS to their smartphone.

What happens if a payment is missed?

The Simple Payment Plan offers flexibility if payments are missed. If your client does miss a payment, it can be spread across the remainder of the plan instead of having to pay double the following month to catch up.

They will be sent a revised payment plan, to advise them of their new instalments. And, if they give us their mobile number or email address when they sign up, we can SMS or email them if they miss a payment, to help them get back on track.

If your clients miss three months of payments in a row, they will be removed from the Simple Payment Plan. But they can be invited to rejoin.

How do I refer clients to the Simple Payment Plan?

The new plan is designed to help those who are struggling the most. It is therefore only available to certain groups of customers.

If you have a client who would benefit from this payment plan, please ask them to call us on 0300 555 0510. They will need to quote the following reference: DCHAR2

Our advisors will be able to take your clients through the process and answer any questions they may have. When they sign up to the Simple Payment Plan, they will be asked to give authority for any current licence they already have for the address, to be cancelled.

People can also be referred via direct mail from TV Licensing if they previously held a licence which was recently cancelled within the last six months because of missed payments or via visiting officer when they have been interviewed under caution for TV licence fee evasion and so may face prosecution.