Are you wondering how long a pending deposit takes to be authorized?
Whether it’s a paycheck, cash you earned from a side gig, or even birthday money from your grandma, there’s nothing more irritating than not being able to use the funds. In fact, it’s quite the test of your patience.
After all, you probably have some pretty important things you need to spend the money on.
While waiting for a deposit to be authorized may be frustrating, banks not only do this to protect themselves, but they also do it to protect you and the payer.
That said, this article will explain what it means when a deposit is pending and how long it takes to be processed. We’ll also answer other questions you may have about pending deposits.
The Quick Answer: Pending deposits typically take 1-3 days to be posted to your account balance. This gives your bank time to process and authorize the deposit. This protects not only them but also you and the payer.
What Does It Mean When a Deposit Is Pending?
When a deposit is pending, it means the deposited funds have hit the account but have not yet been authorized by the bank for use.
The reason banks wait to authorize funds for use is so they can process the money and ensure the deposit is valid (legitimate and legal).
This process allows banks to protect themselves, you, and the payor. For example, a fraudulent deposit or transfer could result in the bank losing money.
That said, it also prevents you from using funds that aren’t yet ready while still letting you know they’ve been received.
Without pending deposits, you wouldn’t know whether or not your bank has received the funds.
As soon as your bank ensures the deposit is valid, the funds will then be switched from “pending” to your available balance.
How Long Does a Pending Deposit Take?
Depending on your bank, the time it takes for a pending deposit to be authorized for use is typically 1-3 days if the transaction is standard. However, in some circumstances, it may take longer.
For example, if the dollar amount of the pending deposit is much more than usual and raises suspicion. In this case, the processing period may be increased by a few days.
In the worst-case scenario, it may be increased to 9 days. This is the maximum amount of days a bank can legally hold a check.
The time it takes for a deposit to be authorized also depends on the type of deposit. For example, a small cash deposit will typically be available the same or next day.
Furthermore, deposits made in person will also be authorized much quicker than ones made online.
How to Check a Pending Deposit
To check a pending deposit, simply login into your bank on your computer or through your bank’s mobile app.
Once you’re logged in, click one of your accounts, i.e., savings account, and recent transactions should be displayed.
If a transaction is still pending, it should say “pending” right below the transaction.
If this isn’t the case, your bank’s website or mobile app should have a designated section for pending deposits.
In the event your pending deposits aren’t showing, or you have no way to log into your account, you can call your bank’s customer service to ask about them instead.
Do Pending Deposits Show In Available Balance?
Pending deposits do NOT show in your available balance, nor can the funds be used. However, depending on your bank, they may show in your current balance.
Your current balance represents your overall financial situation, while your available balance simply shows how much money you have for use.
Considering this, it’s essential you understand the difference between the two, especially for purposes of financial planning.
If you don’t, you could end up spending more money than you actually currently have available for use. If you make a financial commitment, remember you can only use the funds in your available balance, not your current balance.
Can I Spend Money That Is Pending?
Unfortunately, you can’t spend money that is pending. You will have to wait until the money is authorized for release and added to your available balance. Depending on your bank and the type of deposit, this will take anywhere between 1 and 3 days.
For those wondering, you also can’t withdraw a pending direct deposit. You will have to wait until your bank authorizes the direct deposit, and then you can withdraw it.
If you spend or withdraw money that is still pending, you may be charged an overdraft fee if you don’t currently have sufficient funds in your account.
How to Get a Pending Deposit Released
If you need a pending deposit released earlier than usual, your best bet is to contact your bank and ask about your options.
Most banks offer additional services that allow deposited funds to be available sooner than standard if someone needs to cover an emergency expense. However, you may be required to pay a fee.
For example, TD Bank offers fast Funds. Fast Funds allow account holders to access eligible check deposits instantly for a fee. To do so, they give the deposit top priority. This means the pending deposit will be processed before any other transactions that day.
Can a Pending Deposit Be Cancelled?
Your bank may allow you to cancel a pending deposit, known as “stop payment,” on checks you have written or deposited into your own bank account.
However, you may be charged a fee if this request isn’t made before the deposit starts processing.
That said, a pending transaction may be automatically declined if:
- There aren’t sufficient funds in the payer’s account
- The account details are not correct
- The transaction is suspected of fraud
In the event a pending deposit is declined, the pending funds in your bank account will disappear. In other words, they won’t be added to your available balance.
Why Is My Direct Deposit Pending?
If your direct deposit is pending, it’s because the funds have been deposited into your account but are not yet authorized for release. The release date is determined by the company or individual making the deposit into your account.
That said, direct deposits typically take 1 to 2 business days to be authorized for release and go through at different times of day, depending on the bank.
For example, some banks will post the deposit to your available balance at midnight on the day it’s authorized, while others may post it at the start of the business day.
However, some banks like Chime and Axos offer early direct deposit, which is typically up to 2 days earlier than many other banks.
Pending Deposits FAQs
Here are a few frequently asked questions about pending deposits:
How Long Do Pending Deposits Take on Cash App?
According to Cash App, direct deposits are available on their app the moment they’re received, which can be up to 2 days earlier than most banks. However, depending on your employer, your first direct deposit can take longer.
Direct paychecks, tax returns, etc., are available within 24 hours, and Cash App payments are typically available instantly.
How Long Does a Pending Deposit Take With TD Bank?
According to TD Bank, the average amount of time for a pending deposit to be authorized and posted to your account for use is two business days.
However, because this is an average, certain types of deposits will be posted immediately, while others may take 3 or more days.
How Long Does a Pending Deposit Take on Wisely
According to Wisely, cardholders who set up direct deposit can access their funds up to two days earlier than the posted pay date and up to four days earlier for government benefits.
Final Thoughts on How Long a Pending Deposit Takes
While it depends on your bank and the type of deposit, pending deposits typically take 1-3 days to be authorized and posted to your available balance.
During this time, the funds will be unavailable for use while they’re processed and validated. This period is not only to protect the bank, but it’s also to protect you and the payer.
That said, I hope this article has answered most of your questions.
Deposits are an essential part of banking. By understanding their ins and outs, you’ll avoid making mistakes like being charged overdraft fees because you didn’t realize your money was still pending and that you had insufficient funds.
If you frequently find yourself waiting to buy things because your paycheck is pending, you may want to open a checking account with a bank that offers early direct deposit.