PayPal logo.

If your sent payment is still unclaimed, you can cancel it by selecting "Activity" in your PayPal account, choosing the payment to cancel, and selecting "Cancel" followed by "Cancel Payment." If the option to cancel isn't there, that means your payment's already been claimed.

Want to get back the money you’ve sent someone on PayPal? In some cases, you can cancel your payment and get your funds back. Here’s what you can do when you’ve sent a payment and you’d like to reverse it on PayPal.

Can You Cancel a PayPal Payment?

Whether you think you’ve been scammed or just sent a payment by accident, PayPal will let you cancel a payment only if that payment hasn’t been claimed by the receiver. In this case, you can simply click a button on the PayPal website, and your money is credited back into your account.

Unfortunately, most PayPal payments are instant, meaning they’re claimed quickly. That means you don’t get much of an opportunity to reverse your transaction. There are a few things you can do in that case, though, as we explain below.

However, if you’ve accidentally sent money to an email address that doesn’t have a PayPal account, or the email address associated with the PayPal account isn’t confirmed, rest assured that PayPal will automatically credit the money back into your account.

Stop an Unclaimed Payment on PayPal

To check if a payment is unclaimed and to cancel it, follow these steps.

Launch your preferred web browser on your computer and open PayPal. Sign in to your account on the site.

When PayPal’s main screen opens, in the menu bar at the top, select “Activity.”

Tip: If you’re using the PayPal app for iPhone and Android, tap the “Wallet” tab at the bottom of the screen and then “Activity” at the top to find your activity history.

Find the payment to cancel, and next to it, click the “Cancel” option. On the following page, choose “Cancel Payment.”

If you were able to cancel the payment, you can expect the money to be back in your account. And you’re all set.

In case you don’t find the “Cancel” option, your payment has been claimed, which means you can’t cancel it. You aren’t out of luck yet, though.

RELATED: Scammers Are Impersonating Family Members to Get Your Money

Try to Cancel a Claimed Payment on PayPal

If your payment is claimed and you can’t cancel it using the above method, all hope is still not lost. There are a couple of ways you can try to get your money back.

One way is to ask the receiver (politely) if they can refund your payment. You can use your usual messaging apps or emails to have this conversation. The receiver can refund the payment by accessing their PayPal account, choosing their payment, and selecting the refund option. PayPal will then send the money back into your account.

In case the receiver refuses to refund the payment, and you think you’ve been defrauded, raise a dispute with PayPal for that transaction. PayPal will review your dispute and take action accordingly.

To raise disputes, access PayPal’s Resolution Center and click “Report a Problem.”

Select "Report a Problem."

Choose the transaction you need help with and select “Continue.”

Follow the on-screen instructions to submit your report, then wait for PayPal to get back to you.

How Long Will It Take to Get My Money Back?

How long it takes for PayPal to refund you money depends on your case. Usually, PayPal’s customer support team should get back to you in 2-3 days. Then, once you file the evidence for why you want to cancel the payment, you can expect to hear back from PayPal in a few days. Regularly check your balance to see when your payment is back in your account.

What If My PayPal Transaction is a Recurring Payment?

If yours is a recurring payment, PayPal offers an easy way to cancel your subscription payments. You can do that by accessing your PayPal account, finding and choosing your recurring payment, selecting “Cancel,” and following the prompts.

Once you’ve done that, PayPal will no longer deduct money for your chosen subscription from your account.

And that’s how you deal with the payments that you want to be reversed in your account on PayPal. Safe transacting!

RELATED: 8 Common PayPal Scams and How to Avoid Them

Profile Photo for Mahesh Makvana Mahesh Makvana
Mahesh Makvana is a freelance tech writer who specializes in writing how-to guides. He has been writing tech tutorials for over a decade now. He’s written for some of the prominent tech sites including MakeUseOf, MakeTechEasier, and Online Tech Tips.
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