Changes connected with the SEPA payments are :

1) Use of the International Bank Account Number (IBAN)
Starting from 1 February 2014, undertakings must only use the International Bank Account Numbers (IBANs) when issuing invoices and making payments (also national payments). The bank account number will remain the same, but a two-letter country code (EE in Estonia), a two-digit check number and a two-character bank code will be added before it. The Estonian IBAN has 20 characters, while the maximum length of an IBAN is 34 characters.

2) Updating business and accounting software
All undertakings that send large amounts of payments via file exchange to the bank are being advised to start using the new messaging format, ISO 20022 XML, from 1 February 2014. To start using the new format, you have to update your business and accounting software.

  • The ISO 20022 XML format will become compulsory and it will not be possible to send payments to the bank in some other format from 1 February 2015.

  • Banks may allow undertakings to offer a format conversion service during the period of transition; for more information, please contact your bank.

    If you have entrusted your accounting and payroll accounting to our care, updating software will be done by Leinonen OÜ in cooperation with our partners and you do not have to worry about anything.

    3) Direct debits and e-invoice
    From 1 February 2014, banks are only allowed to offer services to their clients that meet the requirements of SEPA. In Estonia, banks will cease to offer national direct debit services on 31 January 2014 at the latest and will replace it with an e-invoice service. You will find additional information about e-invoices on the web page of the Estonian Banking Association at http://www.pangaliit.ee 

  • 4) Frequency and times of payments between banks will be changedWe would like to draw your attention to the fact that the frequency and times of payments between banks will change. Depending on the bank, the latest transfer of the day will be done between 15:00-16:30. In particular, this must be taken into account when transferring salaries, making loan payments and paying prepayment invoices.