Why Has My Credit or Debit Card Been Declined?

Sometimes, cards are declined due to system malfunction. The merchant should tell you if that occurs.

When you make a purchase with your credit or debit card or you attempt to withdraw money from an ATM, you may find your card has been declined. There are a variety of reasons for credit and debit card decline, such as reasons associated with your balance, security and other reasons.



Depending on your financial institution and its rules and regulations, there are many reasons your card may be declined that are associated with your balance. You may have exceeded your credit card limit. If you are using a debit card, you may have miscalculated and the funds may not be available in your account. Some credit and debit cards have a daily monetary limit, you may have exceeded it. Many debit cards have a $1,000 limit on ATM withdrawals, according to Visa. If you exceed that daily withdrawal limit, the ATM will not allow you to withdraw any more money until the next day.


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If your financial institution has reason to believe your card has been stolen or security has been compromised, this will result in immediate card decline. If you are using a debit card, you may have typed in the wrong personal identification number. If you are making online or over-the-phone purchases, your billing address, expiration date and security code must match the information your financial institution has for your account. If any of this information is incorrect, this will result in your card being declined. A card that has been reported lost or stolen will be declined. Also, depending on your financial institution's security procedures, other things may trigger decline, such as too many transactions in a day or in a month, according to U.S. Bank.


Other Reasons

If your card is expired, it will be declined. Sometimes, people forget to activate their new cards and that causes decline. Cards for closed or suspended accounts will also be declined, according to U.S. Bank. You may have accidentally used an old card on a closed account.


Although a credit or debit card decline is an inconvenient and embarrassing event, it often occurs to protect you card's security. To avoid declines, review your financial institution's rules and regulations on balances and the maximum allowed transactions. Also, keep track of your card's balance and always know exactly how much money is on your card. In addition, memorize your personal identification number; do not write it down. Inform the financial institution of any change in your address; keep your most current address as your billing address.