What exactly is the issue and how can I avoid it?
Sainsbury’s Bank says that in July it introduced a new process for customers to change the direct debit that pays off their credit card balance.
Previously, customers had to put in a request online for a member of staff to alter the details of their direct debit – for example, to change the date it leaves their account – and this change would then manually be made by a staff member, who if necessary would check that arrangements were in place to pay off the next month’s balance.
However Sainsbury’s says that under the new system, a request made online is processed automatically.
What’s causing confusion is that when a customer requests a change, their old direct debit is cancelled immediately and the new direct debit will only be applied to the next month’s statement – so for the next month, you may need to make your own arrangements to manually pay off your balance.
Under the old system, because the change was manual, checks were made to make sure. But this no longer happens – and to make matters worse, the Sainsbury’s Bank website wrongly told customers that changes to direct debits made online would come into effect within three days.