Standing order payment reference limits


I’ve just tried to set up a payment to HMRC but couldn’t because the maximum number of characters in the reference you can use is 18, HRMC use 19 / 20 for a number of services.


Hi @daedal Have you contacted customer services about this? I’d imagine it’s something that they would want to be flagged up officially so it can be looked into. :slight_smile:


@daedal Faster payments has a character limit of 18 characters, so even if we allowed you to use 19 characters the receiving bank would only get the first 18.

I’m surprised HMRC are asking for a 19 character reference - could that be for CHAPS payments (which we don’t offer)? I hate to suggest sending you back to HMRC, but it might be worth reaching out to them? Feel free to DM me or our customer service team with more info, and we’ll try to help you out!


I’ll chase it up with HMRC directly, they are normally very good at dealing with queries.



Cool! Will be interested to hear what the resolution is :slight_smile:


Not sure what type of payment you’re sending to HMRC, but found this after a very generic google search - no idea if it helps!


I have three accounts with HMRC all have different types of references, two are simple, only one is complicated and long, after speaking with them, they confirmed that leaving of the last digit won’t affect it arriving in my account with them.


Thanks for confirming! Glad they got back to you so quickly.


Lol! Trust HMRC just to add extra surplus characters to references just to make it that little bit more complicated…