On behalf of the Swiss and Liechtenstein financial centers, SIX Interbank Clearing is in charge of the issuing and administration of Creditor Identifiers. A SEPA direct debit can only be processed throughout Europe with a uniform and standardized identification number that unambiguously identifies the creditor.
If a creditor would like to collect a SEPA direct debit, then they must use their Creditor Identifier, which is routed to the debtor together in the SEPA direct debit mandate. The Creditor Identifier is independent of any account or process and can be used at all financial institutions within the SEPA zone.
Structure of the Creditor Identifier
The Creditor Identifier in Switzerland and Liechtenstein is structured as follows:
- Part a: Positions 1 and 2: The ISO national code for Switzerland (CH), Liechtenstein (LI).
- Part b: Positions 3 and 4: Two-digit check digits (modulo 97-10) pertaining to parts a and d (part c is not considered).
- Part c: Positions 5 to 7: Three-digit Creditor Business Code that can be freely determined by the creditor for the identification of a business field within the same company. If no Creditor Business Code is used, then “ZZZ” is used as a placeholder.
- Part d: Positions 8 to 18: Eleven-digit numerical national Creditor Identifier, which unambiguously identifies the creditor within Switzerland and Liechtenstein. It is numbered progressively beginning with 1 and filled in with leading zeroes.
Application & issuing
Applications for the issuing of a Creditor Identifier can be made exclusively online through financial institutions. Creditors must therefore apply for their Creditor Identifier through a financial institution. The creditor's primary domicile and business headquarters must be in Switzerland or Liechtenstein.
Basically, the same Creditor Identifier may be used at the same time for both the SEPA Core Direct Debit Scheme and the SEPA B2B Direct Debit Scheme. Only one Creditor Identifier will be issued per creditor (company name and address), which will ordinarily contain the “ZZZ” Creditor Business Code (part c). The Creditor Business Code gives the creditor the option of indicating different business fields within their company.
No authorization to collect direct debits in the SEPA Direct Debit Scheme is granted through the issuing of a Creditor Identifier. Such authorization can only be granted by the financial institution that holds the applicant's account.
Should changes arise regarding information pertaining to the creditor (e.g. change of name, change of legal form, etc.), no new Creditor Identifier is to be applied for. The same also goes for address changes (e.g. street) and for bank account switching. The creditor must demonstrate, however, at the request of its financial institution that his identity remains the same notwithstanding any such changes.
If a company in entirety is transferred to a new legal entity, the Creditor Identifier of the company being taken over is to be used. The Creditor’s former Creditor Identifier is to be returned to its financial institution for deletion.
Application for allocation of a Creditor Identifier for SEPA direct debits.
Application for cancellation of a Creditor Identifier for SEPA direct debits.
Application for inquiry of a Creditor Identifier for SEPA direct debits.