How to Accept Pending Payment on PayPal Faster

By Robert Courtneidge 9 Min Read

You had someone pay you for an item but it shows “pending”, sometimes even after you have accepted the payment. There are many related scenarios and this is just an example. Noticed, “pending payment” is common on PayPal, and this article will show you how to accept pending payment on PayPal fast.

Depending on the form of payment or payment type, the pending can clear on its own or you have to manually accept it. But if you have accepted the payment and it continues to be unclaimed, it is either PayPal is reviewing the transaction or the other party needs to approve it on their end.

Why can’t I accept a pending payment on PayPal?

How to accept pending payment on PayPal

If a payment you’ve made shows pending or unclaimed, it indicates that the recipient either hasn’t accepted or hasn’t yet received the payment. This situation can arise if the payment was directed to an email address or phone number not linked to a confirmed PayPal account. In other cases, the transaction may have been put through PayPal systems’ scrutiny until automatically approved.

How to accept pending payment on PayPal

The method you follow to accept pending payment on PayPal depends on the transaction type. Follow this guide to accept the payment.

1. Accept the payment

If a payment you’ve made shows as pending or unclaimed, it indicates that the recipient has not yet received or accepted the payment.

Payment might also remain pending or unclaimed if the recipient has chosen not to automatically accept certain types of payments. These can include payments not in your desired currency, or from senders with unverified addresses. In these instances, you can’t cancel the payment yourself. The recipient has to accept or reject the payment within 30 days.

2. Wait for the seller to confirm the order

The “Pending” order status signifies that the vendor has acknowledged your order but is yet to receive your payment. After making an order, your account displays a “Pending” authorization until the vendor receives your payment. The payment is captured and your account is charged as soon as the vendor processes your order.

3. Allow PayPal system clearance

An eCheck represents an electronic transfer of funds from your bank account to another user’s PayPal account.  Your payment might be processed as an eCheck, even if you’ve linked both a bank account and a card to your PayPal account. This can happen if our internal security system decides to step in.

Why is the money someone sent me on PayPal pending?

You’ve tried to accept pending payment on PayPal but it won’t work. It could be due to one of these possibilities:

1. Seller has not marked the order completed

Following the successful capture of your payment, your account will indicate a “Complete” status, prompting the vendor to dispatch your item.

You can view your order’s status in your account Activity, under Payment status.

2. Internal system checks on eChecks

Security measures are in place to scrutinize transactions before their completion, aiming to safeguard all parties involved.

An eCheck payment might appear as “pending” in your PayPal account. You can verify whether it’s an eCheck payment by accessing the transaction details. Within these details, you’ll also find the anticipated date for payment clearance.

In scenarios where your bank account has insufficient funds or your bank rejects the transaction when we try to execute the eCheck payment, we will retry within 3 business days. If the payment gets declined a second time, we’ll cancel it. Bear in mind, your bank might impose a fee for rejected payments.

3. Bank account transfers are not instant

Bank account transfers are not instant. Therefore, when you make a purchase, PayPal covers the payment for you initially, allowing the seller to receive payment upfront. This way, you can receive your item without any delay, while PayPal waits for the funds to be transferred from your bank account to reimburse their advance.

The transfer process typically takes between 5 to 7 business days, as PayPal uses the most economical (and slowest) transfer option. Nevertheless, the funds usually leave your bank account within a few hours to a few days.

As a buyer, you don’t need to have funds in your PayPal account balance. When you purchase an item, PayPal credits the seller on your behalf to ensure there is no delay in dispatching your item. PayPal then waits for the automatic transfer of funds from your linked payment source to compensate them for this advance. However, PayPal only assumes this ‘risk’ of paying the seller upfront if you pay by:

  • Bank transfer, provided you also have a backup card linked to your account, or
  • Debit or credit card.

If you opt for the first option but do not have a backup card linked, your payment may be processed as an eCheck. In this scenario, both you and the seller must wait for the eCheck to clear.

4. Funds sent to an unregistered PayPal email

Payments may remain pending or unclaimed if they were directed to an email address or phone number that is not associated with a verified PayPal account.

Make sure you’ve sent the payment to the correct email address or phone number. Alternatively, the recipient might need to establish a PayPal account or verify their existing account to receive the payment.

You can choose to cancel the payment if needed.

How do you cancel a pending PayPal payment?

You can cancel a pending payment via your web browser:

  1. Visit the Activity section.
  2. Click Cancel under the payment you wish to cancel.
  3. Follow the provided steps to cancel the payment.

You can cancel an unclaimed payment using the PayPal app:

  1. Click the Wallet icon.
  2. Select Activity.
  3. Locate the payment and click to open.
  4. Click Cancel.

How long does it take to receive a pending payment on PayPal?

How long it takes to receive a pending payment on PayPal depends on the type of payment.

1. Orders from merchants

Vendors typically finalize the order within several days. In most cases, vendors finalize payments for goods when they are prepared to dispatch your item. When it comes to services, rentals, or hotel stays, vendors usually finalize the payment after the complete provision of your purchased service.

The status of your order can remain pending for a maximum of 30 days. After this period, the status changes to either expired, completed, or voided by the seller.

2. eChecks

Generally, it takes up to 5 business days for an eCheck to process, but it could take longer in certain circumstances, as weekends and holidays are not counted as business days.

3. Unclaimed funds

PayPal will automatically cancel any pending or unclaimed payments after 30 days and return the funds to the original method of payment. Refunds to bank accounts can take up to 5 business days, while refunds to credit or debit cards can take up to 30 days.

Conclusion—accept pending payment on PayPal

Just follow the method for the payment type peculiar to your situation to accept the payment. If you have difficulties, get in touch with PayPal customer care for assistance.

Read alsoHow to Get an Overdraft on PayPal


Read also: Applying for PayPal Credit Instantly

Before you goYou want to be the First to get sweet Promotional offers?

We will send more information to your email. Don't miss out. 

Share This Article
Independant Industry Expert in Payments and the Digital Future of Money, Co-Editor of The PAYTECH Book, top Payments Lawyer and voted No. 1 in Payments Power 10 at #PayExpo What do I do? I solve the problem of moving payments firms into the new era of money. Traditional financial services businesses risk getting left behind as Generation Z leapfrogs the banks, opting instead for big techs, challengers, and social commerce propositions. Ignoring blockchain technology and the widening knowledge gap between the financial services and digital sectors puts businesses at risk of falling behind their competitors, compromising their competitive edge, and ultimately becoming redundant.
Leave a comment