Decline Codes

In the payments industry, decline codes are specific codes provided by the issuing bank or card association when a payment transaction is declined. These codes indicate the reason for the decline and help merchants understand why a transaction was unsuccessful. Decline codes are crucial for troubleshooting and resolving payment issues.

When a transaction is declined, the payment processor or acquiring bank receives a decline response from the issuing bank. This response includes a decline code that corresponds to a specific reason for the decline. The decline code is then passed on to the merchant, who can use it to determine the appropriate course of action.

Here are some common examples of decline codes and their meanings:

  1. 05 – Do Not Honor: The issuing bank has declined the transaction, but the specific reason is not disclosed.
  2. 51 – Insufficient Funds: The cardholder’s account does not have enough funds to cover the transaction.
  3. 54 – Expired Card: The card being used for the transaction has expired and is no longer valid.
  4. 57 – Transaction Not Permitted: The issuing bank does not allow the transaction to be processed. This could be due to restrictions on the card, the transaction type, or the merchant’s industry.
  5. 61 – Exceeds Withdrawal Limit: The transaction amount exceeds the cardholder’s daily or monthly withdrawal limit.
  6. 62 – Restricted Card: The card being used has certain restrictions placed on it, such as usage limitations or geographical restrictions.
  7. 78 – No Account: The account associated with the card number provided does not exist.
  8. 91 – Card Issuer Unavailable: The issuing bank is temporarily unavailable or unable to respond to the transaction request.

It’s important to note that decline codes can vary depending on the payment processor, card network, and issuing bank. Merchants should consult their payment service provider or acquiring bank to obtain a comprehensive list of decline codes specific to their payment setup.

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