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I eventually found out through trial and error that the problem in my particular case was that I had changed my payment settings to "Pay after delivery" at some point. I changed it back and it resolved the issue with the delay of sending money to friends and family. No idea why or how the 2 are related, but now I make sure not to turn the option on again, just in case....
I have just gone through a similar ordeal, I am a resident of the Uk & my Mom Lives in the Caribbean, she & I decided to try Paypal after years of using Western Union & growing tired of their hit & miss, incredibly expensive service. Thinking we were upgrading... alas 7 days in & 6 customer service calls later... despite my Mother & My efforts I was consistantly getting the "Pending" response when she tried to send me money. We tried the direct way selecting "Send Money" following steps, when that failed, I tried sending a "Request for funds" but was informed by one of the representitives that this would also be recieved as a "Seller" as the request had been sent as a "Seller" despite me never selecting this option? So with that in mind I took one last stab at it & created a "PayPal.Me Link" this seemed simple enough... I selected the "Friends & Family" option & we thought this was a marvellously simple solution we had simply missed because we were new to the service. Alas same outcome... the dreaded "Pending" funds. Finally today I dug up this forum & discovered others had experienced this problem too... Decided I would give Customer Service one more shot & called back hoping someone may still be able to help. I ended up speaking to a Lovely Lady who actually sounded like she knew what she was doing... she identified the problem as something she had seen before, apparently "Certain Countries Don't Allow The Gift or Friends & Family option for Paypal". She said she needed to check to make sure, she then confirmed it was on the "List of Countries" who have this "Option Barred". This isn't something I was aware of & it has cost me alot of time. So I post in the hope that this may be of use to someone else in the future so they can save the time I wasted. I still see use for Paypal but the service Isn't as advertised & the CSR's that answered the other five times I called this week all seemed very hands off & abysmal to my issue & it was utterly frustrating. Thank God someone finally could give me a straight answer even if it's not the answer I want... it's an end to the questioning of what was going wrong & where... the last person I spoke to asked me if I couldn't send someone to do the transaction for my Mother.... & didn't take the time to check if her Country was one of those that is "Only Allowed Seller/ Buyer Accounts". Just assumed the fault lay with User Error & call it a day. Hey Paypal may have it's uses... but today I discovered this "False Claim of Instant Transfer" isn't one of them.
Cut forward to April 2018 and it's still happening and i am simply sending money to my family in the same country as me [England, UK]
This is ridiculous and not in anyway right or fair as we used to get these payments made & sent instantly, now you hold onto it for however long you like as i guess it generates extra interest for your company that way. you have now turned into the exact thing i hate about being forced to accept from Banks and even try lying about why it has started happening as i can clearly see in this thread
I will be telling all my friends not to bother with paypal anymore it is now a joke and i will not be treated like this or have my money held when i try to make what should have been an instant transfer [and yes it did used to be for me just like everyone else has said this past 2 years on this thread]
Time for me to sign upto internet banking after all these years i have used paypal solely
Yes its very suspicious !!
Its against Paypal rules to buy items and pay using the friends / family option.
This is because you are helping the seller to evade paying his paypal fee and negating your buyer protection at the same time.
So paypal often 'pend' those transactions to check if they are really f/f payments and not payment for goods.
If they feel you are misusing that option then it can lead to your paypal account being permanently limited.