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How to Cancel a Pending Payment in PayPal

Updated March 23, 2017

PayPal is an online financial service that allows customers to pay for merchandise online without giving personal information to each individual merchant. When using PayPal as a tool to purchase items online or with the company's debit card, customers may find it necessary occasionally to cancel a pending payment. PayPal's procedure must be followed to perform this task.

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  1. Log into your PayPal account with your e-mail address and user password. Along the top of the layout, select the "My Account" tab. In the horizontal list, select the "Profile Tab." Select the "Financial Information" column.

  2. Click on one of two buttons: the "Pay List" button or the "Recurring Payments" button, depending on what type of transaction is being cancelled.

  3. Click on "Cancel" to cancel the pending payment. You also may use the PayPal Mobile service to cancel a pending payment.

  4. Sign up for PayPal Mobile by logging into your PayPal account with your e-mail address and password. Select the "My Account" tab. A list of options appears. In the list, click on the "Profile Tab." Select the "Other Options" tab in the drop-down box.

  5. Click on "Send" and then "Mobile payments."

  6. Click on the "Add" button on the bottom right corner in the next screen. Add the mobile number and click on "Activate Your Phone." Enter your PIN code when prompted. PayPal will text you a confirmation code. Type it into the confirmation code box.

  7. Text either the word "cancel" or the letter "x" to the number 729725 to cancel a pending payment. This advanced feature can only be used if the user has activated his phone for PayPal Mobile.

  8. Tip

    Recurring transactions must be cancelled within three days before the payment is set to be processed. Nonrecurring transactions should be cancelled as soon as possible to prevent disbursing funds.


    Contact the company whose payment you are cancelling to set up an alternative payment, if necessary. If a payment is cancelled through PayPal, the consumer might still be responsible for the bill.

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Things You'll Need

  • Computer
  • PayPal account
  • Mobile phone (optional)

About the Author

Victoria Michaels

Victoria Michaels graduated from Purdue University with a bachelor's degree in professional writing accompanied by a certificate in interactive Web writing. Michaels began her writing career behind the scenes writing as a grant consultant as well as creating technical user manuals for small companies. She writes for various online magazines and websites.

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