PayPal Money On Hold: Why is this happening?

PayPal Money On Hold

PayPal Money On Hold: Why is this happening?

If your payment is on hold or not available immediately, we will notify you by email. If eBay made the hold, you will need to contact eBay for more information.

Your payment may be placed on hold in your pending PayPal balance because:

  • The payment you received may be considered unusual for your selling pattern
  • Your account was inactive for a while
  • We found an unusual change in selling price of this transaction
  • You’re selling an item that can potentially cause dissatisfaction with customers
  • We noticed you only recently started selling outside of eBay, so your history with us as an off-eBay seller is quite short.

If there aren’t any issues with your transaction, such as a customer filing a dispute, the payment will move to your available balance with 21 days of receipt.

Why does PayPal do this?

Delaying funds availability is a common industry practice we implement to help ensure the safe and secure use of PayPal by both buyers and sellers.

By placing your money in your pending balance, we can ensure there is enough money in your PayPal account to resolve any issues that may arise with your account such as chargebacks or disputes.

The money still belongs to you. It’s just temporarily not available to use, until your buyer has received the item they ordered in the condition promised.

How can I get access to my funds faster?

If you are experiencing delayed funds availability, here are some shipping tips that may help make your payment available sooner:

  • If you provide tracking information (UPS, USPS, or FedEx) and we can confirm delivery, your payment should be available one day after we can confirm the delivery date.
    • Pending payments are generally released one day after we can confirm delivery, but sometimes the delivery information takes a bit longer to update. Please note that pending payments can’t be released before you meet these requirements. 
    • Buyers can also confirm that they have received the item, which will release the payment immediately.
  • If you fulfill the order, but don’t provide any shipping information, your payment should be available after 21 days, as long as your buyer doesn’t report any issues with the transaction.

To help ensure a successful transaction, we always encourage sellers to adhere to the following best practices:

  • List successfully by including clear photos with detailed, accurate descriptions of items
  • Be clear about shipping and handling time, costs and methods
  • Ship promptly
  • Upload tracking
  • Define your return policy upfront
  • Communicate with your buyers and respond to inquiries quickly and in a professional manner
  • Review all communications from PayPal

How can I release my payment(s) on hold?

You can help to release the eligible payments by following one of the below steps:

  • Add Tracking. Use one of our approved shipping carriers and we’ll release the hold 1 day after the courier confirmed delivery.
  • Update the order status if the held payment is for a service or intangible item (e.g. piano lessons, e-book). You’ll get your money 7 days after verification. 
  • Print USPS or UPS shipping labels with us. We’ll track the item and release the hold 1 day after the courier confirmed delivery.

Otherwise, the payment will be released up to 21 days after you received it, provided there aren’t any issues with your transaction or account. 

Here’s how to add tracking information or change the order status: 

  1. Go to your Activity
  2. Find the transaction you would like to update, then click Get your money
  3. If you sold a product, select Product to add tracking information or print shipping label directly. 
  4. If you sold an intangible item or service, select Service or virtual product to confirm order status. 
  5. Click Submit

Once you click ‘Submit’, the buyer receives an email notifying them that you entered the shipment tracking information for this transaction (if applicable). The email includes the tracking number, order status, and shipping company. 

How to Request a Hold Removal With PayPal?

As any seasoned online marketer knows, dealing with difficult customers is an inevitable part of the job. In some cases, simple correspondence is enough to placate a dissatisfied buyer, while certain customers will simply not be satisfied, no matter how many concessions he is willing to make.

Also, if your small business relies on PayPal to transfer payments, unhappy customers can withhold payments if they feel they have been treated unfairly.

Additionally, in some cases PayPal may choose to hold payments that they have reason to believe were made with stolen credit card or bank account information. If you’ve recently had a hold on one of your payments, you can contact PayPal to request removal of the hold.

  1. Visit PayPal’s homepage and log in to your business’s account, then click the “Contact Us” link found at the bottom of the page.
  2. Click the “Call Us” tab, then click “Contact PayPal Customer Service” if you wish to make your case over the phone. In addition to providing you with PayPal’s customer service number, clicking this tab will present you with a six-digit one-time passcode that you will need to provide to the customer service representative who takes your call. This passcode is only good for one hour, so if you choose to place your call more than 60 minutes after receiving the code, click “Call Us” again to receive another. After calling PayPal customer service and providing your passcode, explain your situation to the customer service representative, making sure to detail why you think the hold was placed unfairly.
  3. Click the “Email Us” tab if you wish to request a hold removal via email. After being redirected to the “Email us” page, select “Disputes” from the “Topic” drop-down menu and “Respond to/Status of Buyer Dispute or Claim” from the “Subtopic” drop-down menu. Compose your correspondence in the “Message” box, then click “Send.” You should receive an email response to your request within 24 hours.

Why is the payment I sent pending? Can I cancel it?

If a payment you sent is pending or unclaimed, it means the recipient hasn’t received or hasn’t accepted the payment yet.  

A payment will be pending or unclaimed if:

  • It was sent to an email address or phone number that isn’t registered to a verified PayPal account. In this case, you’ll be able to cancel the payment. Go to your Activity, find the payment and hit Cancel.
  • The recipient has opted not to automatically accept some payments. These could be payments not in their preferred currency, or from buyers with unconfirmed addresses. In these cases, the option to cancel the payment won’t be available in your Activity. The recipient needs to accept or deny the payment.

We automatically cancel pending or unclaimed payments after 30 days and send the money back to its original source. Refunds to bank accounts may take up to 5 days, while refunds to credit or debit cards may take up to 30 days.


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