Charge For Payment vs Charge To Pay – Key Changes
February 2017

The new Charge to Pay form has been introduced under the new Simplified Procedure Rules which govern debt recovery actions of less than £5,000. Its purpose is to allow respondents a final chance to comply with the decision made in a Simple Procedure case. This new form significantly differs from the existing Charge for Payment form, we’ll talk you through these key changes to help make the new Simplified Procedure Rules a little simpler.


The basis of the form remains the same – like the Charge for Payment it retains the core information about the parties, decisions dates and amounts due however in the new Charge to Pay form the sections this information is in differ.


In keeping with one of the main goals of the new Simple Procedure Rules the new Charge to Pay will use terminology which aims to be more user-friendly for the general public. The table below illustrates these changes between the old Charge for Payment & new Charge to Pay forms:

Old New
Pursuer Claimant
Defender Respondent
Court Action Claim form
Sist Pause
Charge for Payment of Money Charge to Pay
Decree Decision
Incidental Application Application

Service Dates

One of the key changes is the permitted service date for the new Charge to Pay form. Under the old system the Charge for Payment could be served as soon as the decree was issued to the pursuer. However, the Charge to Pay can only be served 28 days after the decision date.

Period of Charge

The period of charge actually remains the same - 14 days if the debtor is within the UK and 28 days if out with the UK or their address is unknown. After that the period of enforcement such as arrestment of earnings, bank account etc can then proceed.

Where the change lies between the Charge for Payment and new Charge to Pay is that the new form details the period for charge as a separate entry (which can be seen under section D on the 2nd page) whereas currently the Charge for Payment form includes the period of charge within the main paragraph which includes various other information as well. This change should make it clearer to recipients how long they have to resolve matters before further enforcement will occur.


There is no requirement for the Officer & Witness to sign the Charge to Pay unlike the Charge for Payment. However in line with the guidance notes issued by the Society of Messengers-as-Arms Alex M Adamson Officers & Witnesses continue to sign the new charges.