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Payments counted as earnings

The protected earnings level

The total of all deductions (the Direct Earnings Attachment plus any other deductions in place) cannot leave the employee with less than the protected earnings proportion, which is 60 per cent of their total net earnings during the calculating period to which the deduction relates.

Do not leave an employee with less than 60 percent of their total net earnings

Payments counted as DEA earnings

Earnings counted for DEA Earnings not counted for DEA
Wages Statutory Maternity Pay
Salary Statutory Adoption Pay
Fees Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay
Bonuses Statutory Shared Parental Pay
Commission Any pension, benefit, allowance or credit paid by DWP, a local authority or HMRC
Overtime pay A guaranteed minimum pension under the Pensions Scheme Act 1993
Most other payments on top of wages Amounts paid by a public department of the Government of Northern Ireland or anywhere outside the United Kingdom
Occupational Pensions, if paid with wages or salary Sums paid to reimburse expenses wholly and necessarily incurred in the course of the employment
Periodic payments by way of compensation for the loss, abolition or relinquishment, or diminution in the emoluments, of any office or employment Pay or allowances as a member of Her Majesty’s forces, other than pay or allowances payable to them by you as a special member of a reverse force
Statutory Sick Pay Statutory Redundancy Payments

If the only earnings your employee receives are those in the right hand column, you cannot calculate a DEA deduction. Similarly, if any of these are paid as part of the earnings, they are not included as part of the employee’s net earnings.

Net earnings

You must take the amount for the Direct Earnings Attachment directly from your employee’s net earnings. Net earnings are the earnings left after deduction of:

  • Income Tax
  • Class 1 National Insurance contributions
  • contributions to a work place pension (including Additional Voluntary Contributions, free standing Additional Voluntary Contributions and Stakeholder Pension Contributions)