We know this is an extremely busy and challenging time for your business and want you to know that we’re working hard to reduce the impact COVID-19 may have on you and your members. You can find answers to your commonly asked questions here.
What will happen if my business is affected by a lockdown?
If your premises are affected by a lockdown, either now or in the future, there is no change to how we will serve you. DFC will continue to collect membership payments via Direct Debit, unless you ask us not to.
If you’ve closed your premises, and wish to freeze all memberships, please tell us as soon as possible, by emailing [email protected]. We need to know:
- Your club name(s)
- Your Club ID: (4 Digit DFC reference Number)
- What you’ve told your members about closing (if you have done so). Please send us a copy of your communications, and links to your website and social media channels. This will allow our Service Delivery Teams to advise your members if they have any questions about their membership.
How will I know that my request to freeze has been received?
You’ll get an email from us confirming that we’ve completed your request.
What if I’m in a lockdown area where closure is required and want to keep billing my members?
We can activate our online freeze portal to allow your members to self-serve based on their preferred choice. If you want us to do this, please email your request to l[email protected]. Please also allow at least 10 working days for us to process your request.
Can I ask to freeze for a fixed timeframe?
No. We’ll be dealing with a large number of requests over the coming months, so if you want to restart your payments you must email us to do so.
Why is there a processing period of at least 10 working days?
This covers the time it takes for us to process your request, and the bank’s processing times.
Why is this approach different to the one taken for UK-wide lockdown in March?
The workload volume for businesses entering and exiting lockdowns will be substantial.
Learning lessons from this, we’ve changed our approach to enable your business to continue receiving income wherever possible. This way we can also continue to process all client requests, whether a business is currently open, or if they have had to close.
Will billing be done on a pro rata basis if my business has to close mid-way though the month?
No. Upon your request, we will stop billing as soon as possible (based on the processing period timelines outlined), and once asked to restart billing from an agreed date, this will rebill all members in full.
Will collection of default fees or debt recovery continue during this period?
No, all default fees and debt recovery will cease until lockdown/closure period is lifted.
What if I want to offer different options to my members?
If you choose to give your members a rebate or add extra months’ to their membership contract following a closure period, then we can support your individual business needs, but we will need to do so after you have reopened.
What happens if I have sites in different countries (such as Scotland or Wales)?
We will follow all relevant national and devolved authorities’ instructions.
Reopening & Restarting Collections following lockdown
When will my collections restart?
Once you are able to reopen and you decide to restart all memberships, you will need to allow at least 10 working days for us to begin collecting your Direct Debit payments again. Please email us at [email protected] to request a restart.
What happens if a member has cancelled their Direct Debit?
Due to BACS regulations, we can’t collect payments for members without a Direct Debit instruction, so we’ve made it easy for them to replace their Direct Debit online via MyPayments.
You can also re-engage your members to ask them to replace their Direct Debit. To find and create a list of members to contact, use Data Retrieval to access Direct Debit updates, filter by date range, and choose the report you’d like to run. You can also schedule when you’d like these in future, and they’ll be emailed to you when available.
If a member is in default, will their ability to access my site(s) be revoked?
This depends on which CRM and access system you use. If you’re unsure, please email your Account Manager at [email protected].
Getting in Touch with Our Teams
Why is it taking so long to respond to queries?
Like we’ve seen all year, we’re still seeing an unprecedented volume of queries into our contact centres and account management team. While we deal with this high volume, response times may be slower than usual.
During this busy time, please help us to respond to everyone quickly by asking your members to submit their query only once. Please also check that contact details for your members are correct and up-to-date.
Thank you for your patience. We’re all doing the best we can to respond to the ongoing challenges COVID has brought us, and we’re committed to getting through this together.
Are the Account Management team working as normal now?
Yes. Please email your Account Manager at [email protected].
Are the Member Services telephone lines open?
Yes, our Member Services team is available to help your members with telephone and email support from 8am – 6pm Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays).
Are Clientline telephone lines available to support our clubs?
Yes, telephone lines and email support are available.
How do I access the portal?
If you don’t have a login, please email [email protected].
What does the status ‘COVID-19’ mean?
This shows that a freeze has been applied to this member.
A freeze has been applied, but the next payment date shows a date when payment should not have been collected. Why is this?
Where a membership freeze has been applied indefinitely, DFC will apply a year 3000 for mass requests, or a standard freeze for individual requests.
If you believe a member has had a payment taken in error, please contact your Account Manager by emailing [email protected].
I requested an action (for example, a freeze) via Data Retrieval, when will I receive confirmation of completion?
Due to the volume of demand we have received, you will not receive confirmation for each action requested. We’re working hard to complete all requests as soon as possible, and will update Data Retrieval once the request has been reviewed.