Reversed by merchant



I’ve had a couple of random transactions from a week ago suddenly be reversed in the past hour and the money returned to my account.

Both of these transactions were for food I bought and I hadn’t requested any kind of refund so I’m wondering if anybody else is suddenly having transactions come back?



Hi Jimam,

I have just been on the phone to Jason in the support team and seems there maybe an ongoing issue.

Keep your eyes on here and there will probably be updates made.



So seems I’m not the only one. I’ve something similar happen to me yesterday, but on my Monzo account. Seems like some restaurants using the same processor. Transactions are dropped if they not finalised within 7 days. Transactions not finalised haven’t actually left your account, but but are held in some sort of reserve account unanticipated of a presentment, which results in the money being transferred to the merchant.


Pret A Manger by chance?

I’ve just had the same happen here and have reported it to customer services who are investigating.


jimam and thom_horne When you pay by card, the merchant requests your bank to hold the amount of the transaction (£1.00 as an example). Starling will show this as being removed from your available balance. The merhant then has to “claim” this money from Starling, which is when the transaction gets finalised and fully removed. From what it seems, payments aren’t fully being collected, and when the time expired to collect, they are bbeing returned into your account.


I have had two reversed in the last hour as well - both from over s week ago …


Hello night owls!

Thanks for letting us know about this.

The team is aware so we’ll investigate and get back to you tomorrow when we know more.

In the meantime, have a nice night all :slightly_smiling_face:


I had a reversed from greggs and fuel. I flipped through my statement and it looks like several of my Greggs one have vanished.


I also had a transaction reversed in the early hours of this morning (Subway).


Same here for a hotel I stayed in last weekend. Thought I was getting it for free but seems like a Starling failure.


@MrRobot above confirmed it has happened on his Monzo account too, so I think it’s a wider issue.


I have had it happen on 3 accounts so the problem is not down to Starling


This was on Monzo help page so may explain the refunds.


How does this work then? Can a merchant effectively charge you at any point in the future? I thought there was a set period where they could claim the funds?


Which is how things should be done.


I don’t think they are charging you in the future though. As I understand it, for other banks the time before they release unclaimed funds back to you is much longer than with Starling. So really it’s the same claim that was originally made, it’s just that the app will no longer show it if it’s unclaimed after a week? (Please correct me if this is a misunderstanding)

I would hope that there is some kind of hard limit on how long unclaimed funds can sit waiting in an account though.

I am wondering what happens here though, when these do get claimed (if?) will they re-appear on the app or come through as new transactions?


That makes sense. As you say though, hopefully there’s a limit on how long companies can take to claim funds. Otherwise I can see it causing budgeting problems for people.


You legally are obliged to pay for your goods or services so they will seek to obtain the money, however as the card schemes recognise that sometimes merchants fail to claim reserved funds (often because they have put the transaction thru against separately under a different transaction ID) they have a system where provisional transactions are released from ring fencing after 7 days (for most things) or 30 days (hotels and vehicle hire I think). However, there are processes for still presenting a finalised transaction after this date, and I think some provision to amend or extend the date may exist for the longer term reservations such as hôtels.


Interesting, thanks.

Perhaps there should be some way in the app to see potentially unclaimed funds after 7 days then? It’s a bit annoying to see an incorrectly high balance that will randomly drop at some point in the future. Makes budgeting a bit hard if there’s missing information.

Reminds me of when you’d write a cheque in the past and somebody would suddenly cash it months later. Would like to avoid having to record my transactions separately elsewhere.


Thing is, the bank can’t know whether a transaction whose reservation was cancelled is to be claimed later, or whether it was simply a dodgy pre-auth implementation (merchant doesn’t refund £1 after a successful authorisation, instead just leaving it to the bank to remove the reservation after 7 days).