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What Does “Apple Pay Transaction Under Review” Mean?

Sarah Edwards | August 04, 2023

Sarah Edwards
Legal Expert
Sarah Edwards, BS

Sarah Harris is a professional researcher and writer specializing in legal content. An Emerson College alumna, she holds a Bachelor of Science in Communication from the prestigious Boston institution.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

Summary: Millions of people use Apple Pay to store their debit and credit card information, which allows them to use their Apple devices to quickly pay for what they need in stores or online. However, sometimes Apple will place transactions under review. SoloSuit explains what to expect when a transaction is going through the review process.

Apple first premiered Apple Pay in September 2014. At that time, it was revolutionary. Rather than carrying debit and credit cards everywhere, consumers could store their payment information on their smartphones and smartwatches, keeping their financial data private — and convenient.

Over the past decade, Apple Pay has quickly gained steam, and millions of stores worldwide accept payment via the app. However, consumers occasionally experience problems using Apple Pay, like when a transaction suddenly goes under review.

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What to know about transactions under review with Apple

Typically, Apple has a specific reason for placing a transaction under review. If you’re new to Apple Pay and haven’t yet verified your identity, the company may put cash transfers on hold until you submit a copy of your ID.

Similarly, suppose that Apple finds multiple separate Apple Pay accounts tied to your ID number. In that case, Apple may decide to put transactions on hold until it can verify that they’re all yours.

Other reasons for a transaction under review may have nothing to do with you. For instance, if Apple suspects an online vendor you’ve recently conducted business with is fraudulent, it may stop your payment while investigating. That protects you and your money, ensuring you don’t transfer funds to a scammer.

You can also instigate a transaction review if you report an issue with a recent payment. To do so, you’ll need to access the payment history for your account within Apple Pay, then click on Report an Issue next to the specific transaction. You’ll provide additional information for Apple, and the company will decide whether you’re due a chargeback or the transaction was legitimate.

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Most transactions under review with Apple take less than a few business days to resolve. However, you’ll want to do everything possible to support Apple during the review. If Apple requests information from you to finalize your transaction, like a copy of your ID, make sure you provide it to expedite the process.

Let’s consider an example.

Example: Sharon has seen other people using Apple Pay at retail stores and decides it may be helpful if she loses her debit card or forgets it at home. She decides to set up Apple Pay on her iPhone. After adding a few cards to her Apple Wallet, Sharon attempts her first transaction on an e-commerce website she’s never shopped with before. She uses Apple Pay to finalize her order and receives an emailed receipt. However, when Sharon checks her Apple transaction history, she notes that the transaction is under review. She’s irritated because she is expecting the products she ordered to arrive the next day. After 24 hours, Sharon receives a note from Apple that it declined the transaction because the store didn’t comply with its Apple Pay agreement. While Sharon didn’t get the products she wanted, Apple Pay may have prevented Sharon from a fraudulent transaction that would have cost her money or, worse, resulted in her payment information landing in a scammer’s hands.

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Prevent Apple Pay transaction reviews by keeping your information current

Apple requires users to submit personal information, such as a copy of their ID card, to maintain a secure environment that consumers feel safe using. When you first enroll with Apple Pay, you’ll likely need to provide Apple with details it can use to verify your identity. Following those steps can streamline the process and prevent transaction errors.

People who use Apple Cash for money transfers must be especially aware of the identity verification process. If they aren’t, Apple will likely put transfers on hold until it can thoroughly verify the user’s identity.

You’ll also want to take care when shopping online. Vendors who accept Apple Pay must accept their operating agreement and fulfill specific requirements. If you’re unfamiliar with an e-commerce company but like what it offers, do a little research before deciding to shop there.

By taking a proactive approach, you can avoid Apple Pay transaction reviews that hamper your shopping experience.

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