Earned Wage Access (EWA) Code of Practice

The CIPP has united with seven leading UK providers of EWA to create an ‘EWA Code of Practice’. This Code was written in response to a recommendation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and sets the common standard for firms providing EWA products to deliver good consumer outcomes. To be compliant with the Code, each provider must undergo a regular independent assurance assessment.

We see the growth of EWA as one of the biggest current trends within payroll. More than 1 in 10 UK employers now offer EWA to their workforce*, and the majority of workers say they'd see an employer as a better place to work, if EWA was offered**. Providing an equivalent service is already a legal requirement in countries such as France, Spain, Italy and Portugal.

In line with the FCA Woolard Review recommendation, we encourage organisations considering the introduction of EWA to read the Code to better understand what providers can and should be doing to deliver good consumer outcomes.

*CIPD Reward Management Survey, 2022
**EY - Payroll That Works For All, 2020

Independent assurance assessment

Trusted Providers Only

The FCA's Woolard Review encouraged the creation of this code, recommending that major employers should only contract with providers adhering to it.

Independently Audited

Providers who adhere to the code are audited on an annual basis by an independent body to ensure standards are upheld. The first audit will take place in Q2 2024 and is open to all providers. The following providers have expressed their interest in complying with the Code, and plan to participate in the next audit in Q2 2024:

EWA definition

Earned Wage Access (EWA) products, also known as Employer Salary Advance Schemes (ESAS), Flexible Pay or On-Demand Pay, is a financial service that allows employees to access a portion of their earned wages before their regular payday.


Commitments of the EWA code of practice

1.    Product Design and Value: Firms will design EWA products and services that meet the needs of employees and provide fair value to consumers.

2.    Communicating with Consumers: Firms will communicate with consumers in a way that is clear, fair, and not misleading; allowing consumers to make informed decisions.

3.    Vulnerability: Firms will act to deliver good outcomes and consistently fair treatment to vulnerable consumers in relation to the EWA products.

4.    Ongoing Consumer Support: Firms will support consumers to realise the benefits of EWA products and services in pursuit of their financial objectives.

5.    Product Governance: Firms will continuously manage EWA products and identify where products no longer provide fair value or meet consumer needs.

6.    Oversight and Measuring Outcomes: Firms will monitor the outcomes that they are delivering to consumers through appropriate management information.

7.    Appropriate Consumer Relationships and Conflicts of Interest: Firms will maintain appropriate consumer relationships and avoid conflicts of interest which lead to consumer harm.

8.    Training and Competency: Firms will train staff to provide suitable service and support to consumers. Staff will feel comfortable in the roles they take on.

9.    Assurance: Firms will commit to annually assuring that they meet the measures outlined within the Code and deliver good outcomes for consumers.


Want to become EWA compliant? Complete the form below. 

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