There are one million reasons why BOSS has had a significant impact on forecourt crime over the past three years. This month BOSS recoveries for No Means of Payment (NMoP) cases reached a staggering £1m as a direct result of the BOSS Payment Watch scheme.

Payment Watch is underpinned by the services of a professional debt recovery agency, which has helped to recover significant NMoP debts for retailers.

However, this amazing amount of monies recovered doesn’t take account of the deterrent effect of the scheme. This means the majority of people either find a way to pay or settle up, at site, within seven days.

Since we launched the scheme, BOSS has worked closely with retailers to ensure that it works well for them. We’ve shown that when BOSS receives accurate evidence we are recovering substantial NMoP debts. However, what is unclear is the percentage of those claiming NMoP actually returning to a site within seven days to settle their debt.

Analysing results from some retailers, we identified one where the BOSS Payment Watch scheme was indicating a recovery rate of only 25% of the cases submitted to BOSS.

On the surface, this didn’t seem too successful and as it was very unusual, it caused me some concern. We reviewed all the incidents recorded by this retailer and established that, by value, 44% of debts had been recovered. Further to this, when we took into account customers returning to site and paying within seven days, the recovery rate jumped to a whopping 94.6% a satisfying result all round.

What’s clear from our investigations is that of cases passed to our debt collection team, the success rate falls significantly if documentation is not submitted to BOSS promptly after the eighth day if still unpaid. Of 126 cases still outstanding, the average time it took for documentation to be sent in was 32 days. This sort of delay can make it very difficult to chase a successful NMoP claim.

Our NMoP scheme is delivering well for those retailers who follow the correct procedures and it’s having an effect on preventing people from claiming NMoP while, at the same time, encouraging those who genuinely have no means to pay, to return and pay. Rest assured we continue to pursue repeat offenders with vigour.