UK SMEs owed £23.4 billion in late payments

02 Dec 2019

Late payment debts owed to the UK's small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) now total £23.4 billion, according to new research from Pay.UK.

A survey conducted by Pay.UK, which runs the BACS direct credit and direct debit payment services, showed that debts due from late payments have soared by over £10 billion from the £13 billion total reported last year.

Over half of SMEs have experienced overdue payments, and the average debt burden per business has increased to £25,000.

Some 78% of SMEs say they are being forced to wait a month beyond agreed payment terms, while another 45% are being kept waiting over two months. In addition, the bill for chasing late payments has now reached £4.4 billion a year.

Commenting on the research, Paul Horlock, CEO of Pay.UK, said: 'It is concerning that so many smaller businesses are struggling because of late payments in 2019, especially as there are so many ways they can now get paid. 

'Offering customers a choice of payment or automated options can help remove barriers to make sure a bill is settled on time.' 

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Higgisons was formed by John Higgison in Oxford Street in 1965 and was originally part of the Accountancy Tuition Centre until James McHale became managing partner and the firm moved to its City Road premises in 1982.

We like to become involved at the planning stage of the formation of a business venture to ensure that it is structured as flexibly and efficiently as possible so that it can cope with changes in legislation or personal circumstances.

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