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Cardiff Council

Direct Earnings Attachments

​​A Direct Earnings Attachment (DEA) is a method councils can use to recover debt from an individual. To set up a DEA the council asks an employer to make deductions from an employee’s salary. This amount is then paid over to the council to reduce or clear the individual’s debt.


The Employers Guide to Direct Earnings Attachments (PDF 139 KB)​​​​​​​​​​Link opens in a new window offers advice on what an employer needs to do if they are asked to carry out a DEA.


It explains:


  • How to operate a Direct Earnings Attachment.
  • How to work out how much should be deducted from the employee’s earnings.
  • How and when to make payments to the council of the amount deducted.
  • Employer's responsibilities under the law.


A payment schedule (DOC 59.5 KB)​​​​​​​​​​Link opens in a new window must be completed and sent to the council to give details of the amounts deducted from the employee's wages. The completed schedule would be attached to any cheque payments or sent in separately when payments are made by BACS.


The full procedure is explained in the employer’s guide (PDF 139 KB)​​​​​​​​​​Link opens in a new window.


The guide is intended to help an employer understand the main points about Direct Earnings Attachments but it is not intended to be a full description or statement of the law.

Find out more about DEA legislation for employers (PDF 46.3 KB)​​​​​​​​​​Link opens in a new window.


If you are an employer and have any questions after reading the guide, please contact us or phone us on 029 2053 7500.


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