Elevating Standards –

Our Code of Practice

Code of Practice

In response to genuine concern about the conduct of matchmaking and dating agencies in the UK at present, the Dating Agency Association was founded and today represents some of the most well-respected agencies within the dating industry. The Dating Agency Association represents traditional Dating Agencies known as offline agencies and individual Matchmakers.
In the absence, so far, of any official legislation, we have created this Code of Practice in order to raise standards, but also with the idea of creating a greater public and media awareness of our services and enhance the image of our industry.

The Aims of the Association are:

  1. To monitor, regulate, and improve the standard of service offered to Members of the public.
  2. To represent the industry in dealings with Government.
  3. To collect and evaluate information concerning British Introduction agencies, whether Members or otherwise.

This Code of Practice is designed to further these aims and will be updated as occasion demands. The Principles set out here are not intended to interpret, qualify or supplant the law of the land. They apply only to transactions with consumers. It is compulsory on all Members to accept the Code in its entirety.


Clients before joining an agency are advised to read the Terms and Conditions of member companies before payment is taken.


Terms and Conditions must be relevant to the service provided by the agency and as a minimum include the following points: All Members will supply to their clients clear information on the terms and conditions applicable to that client’s dealings with the Member agency.


Members must make it clear that their primary objective is to facilitate introductions. It must be clearly stated whether or not an interview is to be conducted with the clients and whether or not all clients are interviewed.


Member companies will accept applications only from persons whom the Member company believes may be recommended to other client members and not to accept for membership clients outside of those criteria.


These Members must make it clear that their primary objective is to arrange and host social events. It must be clearly stated whether or not an interview is to be conducted with all of the invitees.


The criteria used for matching clients must be fully explained. Clients must be told whether stated preferences will be fully adhered to or whether they will be treated as general indicators only.


All fees charged should be clearly stated, including any additional charges, which might be made for interviews, further introductions, etc. Any Member offering a varied pricing dependent upon external factors must ensure that any such varied pricing structure does not in any way discriminate against any individual on the grounds of race, age etc. Price range should be the same for both men or women, or disability. All fees quoted by Members must be quoted INCLUSIVE OF VAT at the prevailing rate.


All Members shall offer and maintain a fair refund policy by law. Each Member must have a contact number on their website which the public can, during normal working hours, use to speak to someone in authority within that Member agency.


All information obtained from clients shall be treated in the strictest of confidence and all legal provisions governing the protection of data will be followed. It is incumbent upon all Members to give guidance (and advice) to their clients regarding standards and codes of behaviour. The lists of names and addresses of clients must remain the property of the Member and must not be sold (other than in the course of a business disposal or by prior consent), lent, hired, or used for any purpose other than as part of their introduction service.


Members shall ensure that clients are removed from their lists of Members immediately they so request. All information supplied by the client to the Member shall not be divulged, without the prior consent of the client, to any other person or party except those of the Member’s clients who have agreed beforehand to have their details given to other Members.

All Members shall indicate on their website that they are a Member of the Association.
Members must make sure that the rights and obligations of both parties to a consumer contract are balanced and that the contract is written in plain and intelligible language. All Members will agree with their client the level of service which will be provided to their clients and ensure that their clients’ expectations as to the level are managed appropriately. Members will be able to demonstrate that they have attempted to comply with this requirement by ensuring that proper client care information is provided at the outset. Websites claiming to take no responsibility for the loss or damage to clients confidential and personal data will not be permitted as members
All Members will ensure that they and all of their staff are made aware of the requirements of the Code of Practice set out by the DAA.
No Member shall use advertisements that are inaccurate, ambiguous, exaggerated, or liable to be misconstrued. All advertising by Members must comply with the codes and standards set by the Advertising Standards Authority and the ITC and Radio Authority, and with the requirements of any legislation currently in force. Advertisements must not contain the words ‘guarantee’ or ‘guaranteed’ unless the full terms of such undertakings as well as the remedial action open to a client are either clearly set out in the advertisement or are available to the client in writing before any monies are paid. The price quoted shall be the price at which the client can participate fully in a Member’s services. Members must therefore quote the relevant price for their service, plus any additional charge that may reasonably arise (including VAT). If the quoted price excludes any part of the service, such exclusions must be clearly specified.
Members must not engage in high pressure selling.
All Members will maintain a complaints procedure and a record of complaints and will acknowledge receipt of complaints within 21 working days of receipt of any complaint. When complaints are raised through a third party (e.g. Trading Standards Officer or a Citizens Advice Bureau), willing guidance must be given to that body and every attempt should be made to re-establish direct communication with the complaining client and to reach a satisfactory settlement with them. Any complaint in relation to compliance in this Code of Practice will be investigated and dealt with in accordance with the disciplinary rules of the Association. All member companies must take steps to ensure they properly protect client’s privacy and comply fully with the standards set by The Information Commissioner’s Office with regard to the security and handling of personal client data. Member companies should detail their data handling policies and compliance with GDPR within their terms and conditions and on their website.
This Code of Practice is binding on all Members of DAA and membership is subject at all times to Members adhering to this Code of Practice. Regular random checks are made by Officers of the Association on Members to ensure that Members comply with this Code and that literature given to the public conforms to the Code and does not use language or claims, which might well lead to unrealistic expectations on behalf of the prospective clients. In the event that any Member breaches this Code of Practice, then the Officers have the power to impose upon that Member one of the following sanctions;

  • To pay a fine.
  • To suspend the Member’s membership of the DAA.
  • To expel the Member from the DAA.
Member companies are required to provide personal safety guidelines on their websites and to ensure that clients are fully aware of the importance of following such guidelines. Member companies are required to advise the Association on the details of their personal safety policies.
Member companies should only accept clients who they feel they will be able to provide with acceptable recommendations. Acceptable recommendations should at least partially match the clients partner preferences. Member companies should also give an indication of the number of recommendations a client will receive during their membership period, taking the clients circumstances and stated preferences into account. Member agencies should make it clear what constitutes a recommendation according to their terms and conditions.