Learn how to cancel a direct debit following this sample letter formula. Understand the details you must include to make sure that the cancellation runs as smoothly as possible.
You don’t have to go into any detail when you want to cancel a direct debit, as the following sample letter will demonstrate. All you need to do is specify the account you are talking about, and the exact payment you require to be cancelled. You do not have to explain why you are cancelling; you chose to set up the direct debit and you can choose to cancel it.
Your letter to the merchant may be a little different, especially if you are attempting to cancel a direct debit in the middle of a contract. In this case, you would be strongly advised to get some legal advice before acting. Cancellation of certain direct debits may constitute a breach of contract on your part and may lead to legal repercussions for you.
It may be possible to cancel a direct debit by only writing to the financial institution and not the merchant, but this should be avoided for two reasons: firstly, it is a simple matter of courtesy to inform a merchant that you are cancelling with them; secondly, prior notification will prevent you receiving query letters from the merchant asking why their direct debit has been returned to them unpaid.
Once you have cancelled your direct debit with both parties, you should ask for confirmation that this has indeed been carried out. It is always a good idea to call back after a few days and ask that your account is checked for the cancellation order.
The following letter is obviously just a guide and you must make sure you insert the relevant details in the appropriate places [in these parentheses]. Make sure you keep a copy of any letters pertaining to financial issues, and always be sure to date your letter, as without a date you have no comeback should your direct debit continue to be paid because you will not be able to prove when you asked for it to be cancelled. Remember that all account holders must sign at the end of the letter.
[Your name and address]
[Name of bank, building society or credit union]
[Name of branch]
My/Our account name: [ ]
Credit Card Account No: [ ]
RE: CANCELLATION OF DIRECT DEBIT
I/We advise you that I/we have cancelled the direct debit authority previously given to [name of merchant] from my/our credit card account with immediate effect. I am enclosing a copy of the letter I/we have sent to the merchant.
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