Seasonal BACS processing dates - Dare we mention the “C” word?!?

27 October 2020

This time of year hosts many deadlines that payroll professionals need to be aware of, therefore it would be prudent to remind ourselves of the BACS processing deadlines for the seasonal period.

BACS provide a handy table which reminds payroll professionals of the dates in which payments will need to be processed so that they are paid to their employees on time.


Many employers decide to pay employees’ wages earlier in the month of December so that monies are received prior to the Christmas break. It is important to remember that if you change your pay date for this very reason, you will need to ensure that when you submit your Full Payment Submission (FPS) for that period, that the payment date remains the same as the usual pay date. This easement was originally implemented back in 2018, however, as detailed in the December 2019 Employer Bulletin, HMRC advised that this easement would become permanent for years to come.

Whilst employers may feel that they are ‘helping out’ employees by paying them earlier, if the usual payment date is not entered, it could in fact have the opposite affect if those employees are in receipt of universal credits. 

The same also applies when payments are made earlier due to the usual pay date falling on either a bank holiday or a weekend (non-processing days).

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