What is a CHAPS Payment?

What does CHAPS mean?A CHAPS Payment is a same day bank-to-bank payment in the UK. The full name of the service is Clearing House Automated Payment System, and it is used for high value or time-critical payments.

Unlike most other types of payments which are processed through the Bacs system, CHAPS Payments are processed separately by the Bank of England. This means that there is no upper limit on the value of a CHAPS Payment, although there is a £10 fee per payment.

CHAPS Payments can be made online, over the phone, or in branch, and they are typically completed within two hours. Because of the speed and flexibility of CHAPS Payments, they are often used for large purchases, such as house deposits, or for paying taxes and utility bills.

However, because CHAPS Payments are processed separately from other payments, they cannot be reversed once they have been made. This makes them unsuitable for small-value or low-risk payments

What does CHAPS mean?

CHAPS is an acronym that stands for Clearing House Automated Payment System. It is a real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system used in the United Kingdom for high-value payments.

The system is designed to handle large volumes of transactions with speed and accuracy. CHAPS is used by banks and other financial institutions to make payments between themselves, as well as to and from customers.

Payments made using CHAPS are typically processed within two hours, making it one of the quickest payment methods available. In addition, CHAPS payments are guaranteed by the Bank of England, meaning that there is no risk of them being returned or delayed. As a result, CHAPS is often used for time-sensitive payments, such as property purchases or salary payments.

What is the purpose of CHAPS?

CHAPS guarantee same-day payment, as long as it is made before the cut off time with in the working day. The time is determined by your bank, there is no limit to the amount of money that you can transfer via CHAPS.

Payments sent via CHAPS over £10,000 can be settled immediately, they are an excellent choice for anyone who needs to make a large, time-sensitive transfer. These are usually payments sent to a solicitor as a deposit on a house,  making supplier payments, or settling a foreign exchange transaction.

What is the difference between CHAPS, BACS, and Faster Payments?

When it comes to making payments, there are a few different options available. Two of the most popular methods are CHAPS and BACS. But what’s the difference between them?

CHAPS (Clearing House Automated Payment System) is a same-day payment service that’s available in the UK. This means that if you make a payment using CHAPS, the money will be transferred to the recipient’s account on the same day. The main advantage of using CHAPS is that it’s a very quick way to send money. However, it’s also worth noting that CHAPS payments can be quite expensive, as there is typically a fee for using the service.

Bacs (Bankers’ Automated Clearing Service) is another popular payment method in the UK. Unlike CHAPS, Bacs payments are not processed on the same day. Instead, they take place over a three-day period. The main advantage of Bacs is that it’s a lot cheaper than CHAPS, as there are no fees for making a payment. However, one downside is that it can take a few days for the money to reach the recipient.

What are the benefits of using CHAPS payments?

The benefits of using CHAPS payments are the ability of the same-day payment system used by banks and other financial institutions to transfer large sums of money.

Unlike most other payment systems, CHAPS payments are guaranteed to be processed within two hours. This makes it an ideal way to send large payments, such as a mortgage deposit, rent payments, or estate taxes. CHAPS payments are also very secure, as they are processed through the Bank of England rather than through the Faster Payments Service.

This means that there is less risk of fraud or error. In addition, CHAPS payments can be made in any currency, making it a convenient way to send money internationally. Overall, CHAPS is a reliable and secure way to send large payments. While there is a fee for using the service, the peace of mind and convenience it offers is typically worth the cost.

What are the disadvantages of using CHAPS?

There are a few potential disadvantages to using CHAPS as a method of payment.

First, it can be expensive. The high fees associated with CHAPS transfers can make it impractical for small businesses or individuals to use this method.

Second, CHAPS is a slow payment system. The process can take up to three days to complete, which can be frustrating for users who need their funds immediately.

Finally, CHAPS is a centralised system, meaning that it is reliant on the banking system to function properly. This means that if there are any problems with the banks, CHAPS payments will be affected.

Overall, while there are some drawbacks to using CHAPS, it remains a popular and convenient method of payment for many people.

How does a CHAPS payment work?

Here’s how to make a CHAPS payment: All you need to do is head to the bank with all your payment details (as well as the details of your payee) and they should be able to set up the entire transfer for you.

If you would prefer, you can also make a CHAPS payment online. In order to make a CHAPS payment, you will need the recipient’s bank details, including the name of their bank, their sort code, and their account number.

You will also need to provide your own bank with a reference code for the payment. Once the payment has been processed, the funds will be available in the recipient’s account immediately.

While CHAPS payments are typically more expensive than standard bank transfers, they offer peace of mind for high-value transactions.

How long does a CHAPS payment take?

A CHAPS payment can take up-to two hours to reach the required beneficiary. There are a few things that can affect how long it takes for a CHAPS payment to go through.

For example, if you are sending the payment to someone who doesn’t have a UK bank account, it can take up to three days for the money to arrive.

Similarly, if you are sending a large sum of money, the banks may need to carry out additional checks which can take time. In general, however, most CHAPS payments will go through within 24 hours.

So if you need to make a fast payment, CHAPS is usually a good option.

What is the CHAPS payment limit?

There is no CHAPS payment limit as of 2022 by any bank within the UK.

Are CHAPS payments safe?

Yes CHAPS  payments are safe due to the system being highly secure due to being a closed network of approved financial institutes. The CHAPS payment system is highly regulated and the Bank of England has been responsible for running CHAPs since 2017.


A CHAPS (Clearing House Automated Payment System) payment is a type of electronic bank-to-bank payment that allows for same-day transfer of funds in the United Kingdom. CHAPS is a real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system operated by the Bank of England, primarily used for high-value, time-critical transactions, such as property purchases, large business payments, and interbank transfers.

CHAPS payments are processed individually and settled immediately, with funds transferred between accounts in real-time without delay. CHAPS payments are known for their reliability, security, and speed, offering a fast and efficient means of transferring large sums of money securely within the UK banking system. However, CHAPS payments typically come with higher fees compared to other payment methods, given the premium service and expedited processing provided.

Business Finance specialist at Invoice funding | + posts

Seasoned professional with a strong passion for the world of business finance. With over twenty years of dedicated experience in the field, my journey into the world of business finance began with a relentless curiosity for understanding the intricate workings of financial systems.

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