note

Declines are not the same as gateway rejections. Declined transactions are blocked by the customer's bank, while gateway rejections are blocked by your gateway settings.

A processor decline indicates that the customer’s bank has refused the transaction request. Sometimes you can tell why it was declined by reading the response code, but only the customer's bank can confirm the specific reason. Here are a few of the most common ones:

  1. Incorrect credit card number or expiration date
  2. Insufficient funds
  3. Some banks will reject charges based on location
  4. Some banks will reject charges based on their own fraud rules

An acceptable decline ratio is about 10%, but this may fluctuate based on industry or business model. You can analyze your decline ratio by creating a decline report.

important

Your decline ratio may be inflated by repeated attempts on the same payment method—either on your end or the customer’s end. We recommend that you use our risk threshold rules to reduce repeated customer attempts and our automated retry logic for subscriptions instead of implementing your own.

Authorization declines

When we talk about declines, we're usually referring to authorization declines. These happen when you request authorization to charge a customer's payment method, and the bank refuses to authorize the charge.

See the complete list of authorization decline codes.

Settlement declines

Declines can also happen on settlement: when you try to collect funds from a customer's payment method after a successful authorization, and the bank says no. These declines are much more rare than authorization declines. See more details on settlement declined transactions in the developer docs.

See the complete list of settlement decline codes.

Types of declines

There are two types of declines: hard declines and soft declines.

  • Hard declines are the result of an error or issue which cannot be resolved immediately; the decline is not temporary and subsequent attempts with the same payment method will likely not be successful.
  • Soft declines result from a temporary issue and can be retried; subsequent transaction attempts with the provided payment method information may process successfully.

Handling declines

To help mitigate fraud, merchants typically show the customer a relatively generic message when a payment method is declined (e.g. There was a problem processing your credit card; please double check your payment information and try again). We still recommend that you log the processor response code in your system in case a customer contacts you for more information.

Retrying declined transactions

You can also determine if there are any decline codes that you might want to handle differently. For example, because soft-declined transactions can sometimes work when retried, you could put the customer's order in a pending status and try again later. If subsequent attempts are unsuccessful, it’s best to ask for a new payment method or cancel the order.

When deciding whether to retry declined transactions, be aware that some card associations have rules around retrying transactions originally passed with a recurring ecommerce indicator (ECI) flag. To comply with these rules, do not attempt manual or automated retries on transactions with this flag in the following cases:

  • Soft declines: Do not retry the transaction more than 4 times in 16 days
  • 2004 hard decline: Do not retry the transaction
  • 2005 hard decline: Do not retry the transaction with the same payment information
  • 2015 hard decline: Do not retry the transaction
note

The transaction response object that you receive via the API will indicate whether this flag was passed.

Additional Processor Responses

As a supplement to processor response codes, you can choose to enable Additional Processor Responses. If enabled and the processor declines the transaction, the processor’s raw response will be displayed on the transaction in the Control Panel. Often this response doesn’t offer much additional context, which is why this feature is disabled by default. If you would like to enable it:

  1. Log into the Control Panel
  2. Navigate to Settings > Processing > Display Additional Processor Response
  3. Click the toggle to enable this feature

Regardless of whether you enable this feature in the Control Panel, the API will always return the Additional Processor Response on the transaction object.

Authorization decline codes

Code Text Implications Type
2000 Do Not Honor The customer's bank is unwilling to accept the transaction. The customer will need to contact their bank for more details regarding this generic decline. Soft
2001 Insufficient Funds The account did not have sufficient funds to cover the transaction amount at the time of the transaction – subsequent attempts at a later date may be successful. Soft
2002 Limit Exceeded The attempted transaction exceeds the withdrawal limit of the account. The customer will need to contact their bank to change the account limits or use a different payment method. Soft
2003 Cardholder's Activity Limit Exceeded The attempted transaction exceeds the activity limit of the account. The customer will need to contact their bank to change the account limits or use a different payment method. Soft
2004 Expired Card Card is expired. The customer will need to use a different payment method. Hard
2005 Invalid Credit Card Number The customer entered an invalid payment method or made a typo in their credit card information. Have the customer correct their payment information and attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, they will need to contact their bank. Hard
2006 Invalid Expiration Date The customer entered an invalid payment method or made a typo in their card expiration date. Have the customer correct their payment information and attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, they will need to contact their bank. Hard
2007 No Account The submitted card number is not on file with the card-issuing bank. The customer will need to contact their bank. Hard
2008 Card Account Length Error The submitted card number does not include the proper number of digits. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, the customer will need to contact their bank. Hard
2009 No Such Issuer This decline code could indicate that the submitted card number does not correlate to an existing card-issuing bank or that there is a connectivity error with the issuer. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, the customer will need to contact their bank. Soft
2010 Card Issuer Declined CVV The customer entered in an invalid security code or made a typo in their card information. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, the customer will need to contact their bank. Hard
2011 Voice Authorization Required The customer’s bank is requesting that the merchant (you) call to obtain a special authorization code in order to complete this transaction. This can result in a lengthy process – we recommend obtaining a new payment method instead. Contact our Support team for more details. Hard
2012 Processor Declined – Possible Lost Card The card used has likely been reported as lost. The customer will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2013 Processor Declined – Possible Stolen Card The card used has likely been reported as stolen. The customer will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2014 Processor Declined – Fraud Suspected The customer’s bank suspects fraud – they will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2015 Transaction Not Allowed The customer's bank is declining the transaction for unspecified reasons, possibly due to an issue with the card itself. They will need to contact their bank or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2016 Duplicate Transaction The submitted transaction appears to be a duplicate of a previously submitted transaction and was declined to prevent charging the same card twice for the same service. Soft
2017 Cardholder Stopped Billing The customer requested a cancellation of a single transaction – reach out to them for more information. Hard
2018 Cardholder Stopped All Billing The customer requested the cancellation of a recurring transaction or subscription – reach out to them for more information. Hard
2019 Invalid Transaction The customer’s bank declined the transaction, typically because the card in question does not support this type of transaction – for example, the customer used an FSA debit card for a non-healthcare related purchase. They will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2020 Violation The customer will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2021 Security Violation Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, contact our Support team for more information. Soft
2022 Declined – Updated Cardholder Available The submitted card has expired or been reported lost and a new card has been issued. Reach out to your customer to obtain updated card information. Hard
2023 Processor Does Not Support This Feature Your account cannot process transactions with the intended feature – for example, 3D Secure or Level 2/Level 3 data. If you believe your merchant account should be set up to accept this type of transaction, contact our Support team. Hard
2024 Card Type Not Enabled Your account cannot process the attempted card type. If you believe your merchant account should be set up to accept this type of card, contact our Support team. Hard
2025 Set Up Error – Merchant Depending on your region, this response could indicate a connectivity or setup issue. Contact our Support team for more information regarding this error message. Soft
2026 Invalid Merchant ID Depending on your region, this response could indicate a connectivity or setup issue. Contact our Support team for more information regarding this error message. Soft
2027 Set Up Error – Amount This rare decline code indicates an issue with processing the amount of the transaction. The customer will need to contact their bank for more details. Hard
2028 Set Up Error – Hierarchy There is a setup issue with your account. Contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2029 Set Up Error – Card This response generally indicates that there is a problem with the submitted card. The customer will need to use a different payment method. Hard
2030 Set Up Error – Terminal There is a setup issue with your account. Contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2031 Encryption Error The cardholder’s bank does not support $0.00 card verifications. Enable the Retry All Failed $0 option to resolve this error. Contact our Support team with questions. Hard
2032 Surcharge Not Permitted Surcharge amount not permitted on this card. The customer will need to use a different payment method. Hard
2033 Inconsistent Data An error occurred when communicating with the processor. Attempt the transaction again. Soft
2034 No Action Taken An error occurred and the intended transaction was not completed. Attempt the transaction again. Soft
2035 Partial Approval For Amount In Group III Version Refer to the AVS response for further details. Soft
2036 Authorization could not be found to reverse An error occurred when trying to process the authorization. This response could indicate an issue with the customer’s card – contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2037 Already Reversed The indicated authorization has already been reversed. If you believe this to be false, contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2038 Processor Declined The customer's bank is unwilling to accept the transaction. The reasons for this response can vary – customer will need to contact their bank for more details. Soft
2039 Invalid Authorization Code The authorization code was not found or not provided. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, they will need to contact their bank. Hard
2040 Invalid Store There may be an issue with the configuration of your account. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, contact our Support team for more information. Soft
2041 Declined – Call For Approval The card used for this transaction requires customer approval – they will need to contact their bank. Hard
2042 Invalid Client ID There may be an issue with the configuration of your account. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, contact our Support team for more information. Soft
2043 Error – Do Not Retry, Call Issuer The card-issuing bank will not allow this transaction. The customer will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2044 Declined – Call Issuer The card-issuing bank has declined this transaction. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, they will need to contact their bank for more information. Hard
2045 Invalid Merchant Number There is a setup issue with your account. Contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2046 Declined The customer's bank is unwilling to accept the transaction. For credit/debit card transactions, the customer will need to contact their bank for more details regarding this generic decline; if this is a PayPal transaction, the customer will need to contact PayPal. Soft
2047 Call Issuer. Pick Up Card The customer’s card has been reported as lost or stolen by the cardholder and the card-issuing bank has requested that merchants keep the card and call the number on the back to report it. As an online merchant, you don’t have the physical card and cannot complete this request – obtain a different payment method from the customer. Hard
2048 Invalid Amount The authorized amount is set to zero, is unreadable, or exceeds the allowable amount. Make sure the amount is greater than zero and in a suitable format. Soft
2049 Invalid SKU Number A non-numeric value was sent with the attempted transaction. Fix errors and resubmit with the transaction with the proper SKU Number. Hard
2050 Invalid Credit Plan There may be an issue with the customer’s card or a temporary issue at the card-issuing bank. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, ask for an alternative payment method. Soft
2051 Credit Card Number does not match method of payment There may be an issue with the customer’s credit card or a temporary issue at the card-issuing bank. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, ask for an alternative payment method. Hard
2053 Card reported as lost or stolen The card used was reported lost or stolen. The customer will need to contact their bank for more information or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2054 Reversal amount does not match authorization amount There may be an issue with the customer’s card or a temporary issue at the card-issuing bank. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, ask for an alternative payment method. Soft
2055 Invalid Transaction Division Number Contact our Support team for more information regarding this error message. Hard
2056 Transaction amount exceeds the transaction division limit Contact our Support team for more information regarding this error message. Hard
2057 Issuer or Cardholder has put a restriction on the card The customer will need to contact their issuing bank for more information. Soft
2058 Merchant not Mastercard SecureCode enabled The attempted card cannot be processed without enabling 3D Secure for your account. Contact our Support team for more information regarding this feature or contact the customer for an alternative payment method. Hard
2059 Address Verification Failed PayPal was unable to verify that the transaction qualifies for Seller Protection because the address was improperly formatted. The customer should contact PayPal for more information or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2060 Address Verification and Card Security Code Failed Both the AVS and CVV checks failed for this transaction. The customer should contact PayPal for more information or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2061 Invalid Transaction Data There may be an issue with the customer’s card or a temporary issue at the card-issuing bank. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, ask for an alternative payment method. Hard
2062 Invalid Tax Amount There may be an issue with the customer’s card or a temporary issue at the card-issuing bank. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, ask for an alternative payment method. Soft
2063 PayPal Business Account preference resulted in the transaction failing You cannot process this transaction because your account is set to block certain payment types, such as eChecks or foreign currencies. If you believe you have received this decline in error, contact our Support team. Hard
2064 Invalid Currency Code There may be an issue with the configuration of your account for the currency specified. Contact our Support team for more information. Hard
2065 Refund Time Limit Exceeded PayPal requires that refunds are issued within 180 days of the sale. This refund cannot be successfully processed. Hard
2066 PayPal Business Account Restricted Contact PayPal’s Support team to resolve this issue with your account. Then, you can attempt the transaction again. Hard
2067 Authorization Expired The PayPal authorization is no longer valid. Hard
2068 PayPal Business Account Locked or Closed You'll need to contact PayPal’s Support team to resolve an issue with your account. Once resolved, you can attempt to process the transaction again. Hard
2069 PayPal Blocking Duplicate Order IDs The submitted PayPal transaction appears to be a duplicate of a previously submitted transaction. This decline code indicates an attempt to prevent charging the same PayPal account twice for the same service. Hard
2070 PayPal Buyer Revoked Future Payment Authorization The customer requested a cancellation of all future transactions on their PayPal account. Reach out to the customer for more information or an alternative payment method. Hard
2071 PayPal Payee Account Invalid Or Does Not Have a Confirmed Email Customer has not finalized setup of their PayPal account. Reach out to the customer for more information or an alternative payment method. Hard
2072 PayPal Payee Email Incorrectly Formatted Customer made a typo or is attempting to use an invalid PayPal account. Hard
2073 PayPal Validation Error PayPal cannot validate this transaction. This decline code will be triggered if you attempt a transaction using the email address registered with your PayPal Business account. Hard
2074 Funding Instrument In The PayPal Account Was Declined By The Processor Or Bank, Or It Can't Be Used For This Payment The customer’s payment method associated with their PayPal account was declined. Reach out to the customer for more information or an alternative payment method. Hard
2075 Payer Account Is Locked Or Closed The customer’s PayPal account cannot be used for transactions at this time. The customer will need to contact PayPal for more information or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2076 Payer Cannot Pay For This Transaction With PayPal The customer should contact PayPal for more information or use an alternative payment method. You may also receive this response if you create transactions using the email address registered with your PayPal Business account. Hard
2077 Transaction Refused Due To PayPal Risk Model PayPal has declined this transaction due to risk limitations. You'll need to contact PayPal’s Support team to resolve this issue. Hard
2079 PayPal Merchant Account Configuration Error You'll need to contact our Support team to resolve an issue with your account. Once resolved, you can attempt to process the transaction again. Hard
2081 PayPal pending payments are not supported Braintree received an unsupported Pending Verification response from PayPal. Contact Braintree’s Support team to resolve a potential issues with your account settings. If there is no issue with your account, have the customer reach out to PayPal for more information. Hard
2082 PayPal Domestic Transaction Required This transaction requires the customer to be a resident of the same country as the merchant. Reach out to the customer for an alternative payment method. Hard
2083 PayPal Phone Number Required This transaction requires the payer to provide a valid phone number. The customer should contact PayPal for more information or use an alternative payment method. Hard
2084 PayPal Tax Info Required The customer must complete their PayPal account information, including submitting their phone number and all required tax information. Hard
2085 PayPal Payee Blocked Transaction Fraud settings on your PayPal business account are blocking payments from this customer. These can be adjusted in the Block Payments section of your PayPal business account. Hard
2086 PayPal Transaction Limit Exceeded The settings on the customer's account do not allow a transaction amount this large. They will need to contact PayPal to resolve this issue. Hard
2087 PayPal reference transactions not enabled for your account The fraud settings on your PayPal business account are blocking payments from this customer. You can adjust these settings in the Block Payments section of your PayPal business account. Hard
2088 Currency not enabled for your PayPal seller account This currency is not currently supported by your PayPal account. You can accept additional currencies by updating your PayPal profile. Hard
2089 PayPal payee email permission denied for this request PayPal API permissions are not set up between your PayPal business accounts. Contact our Support team for more details. Hard
2090 PayPal account not configured to refund more than settled amount Your PayPal account is not set up to refund amounts higher than the original transaction amount. Contact PayPal's Support team for information on how to enable this. Hard
2091 Currency of this transaction must match currency of your PayPal account Your PayPal account can only process transactions in the currency of your home country. Contact PayPal's Support team for more information. Hard
2092-2999 Processor Declined The customer's bank is unwilling to accept the transaction. The customer will need to contact their bank for more details regarding this generic decline. Soft
3000 Processor Network Unavailable – Try Again This response could indicate a problem with the back-end processing network, not necessarily a problem with the payment method. Have the customer attempt the transaction again – if the decline persists, contact our Support team for more information. Soft

Settlement decline codes

Code Text
4001 Settlement Declined
4003 Already Captured
4004 Already Refunded
4006 Capture Amount Exceeded Allowable Limit
4018 PayPal Pending Payments Not Supported

Still have questions?

If you can’t find an answer, contact our Support team.


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