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PayPal through Braintree payment hold

New Community Member
Posted on

Hello all,


Firstly, sorry if I am posting on the wrong board... None of them really seem to fit my problem and PayPal Customer support isn't being hugely helpful so I don't really have anywhere else to turn!


Basically, we are a software development company and use Braintree as our payment integration on our website. When a user makes a purchase, Braintree returns that the payment has been submitted for settlement and the user automatically gets allocated a software activation licence in their account (they buy and receive the product instantly and digitally as is the norm in our industry). The problem happens when we try and add PayPal to our integration (built into Braintree's drop-in UI - it just needs enabling in the control panel). When testing a couple of months ago we found that if a user were to use the PayPal payment method, the user would successfully pay money through PayPal but Braintree would get an error code saying it failed due to PayPal putting the money on hold. Paypal would send an email saying:

"The payment from David <removed>is on temporary hold

We've placed the money on hold because we've noticed that you're a new PayPal seller and will need time to build a positive selling history. The money will appear in your pending balance and will be available after the order has been fulfilled as long as no claims are raised by the buyer or any issues arise with your account.


Here's what you can do to get access to your money more quickly:

Provide shipment information

Add a valid tracking number and your money will be available 1 day after the carrier reports the shipment has been delivered.


Update the status of your service or virtual product sale

If your item doesn't need to be shipped, (e.g. e-ticket or piano lessons) update the order status and your money will be available within 7 days after verification."


Because Braintree receives an error saying the payment hasn't been made, our server doesn't allocate a licence as it presumes the payment fails. Plus, all our sales are virtual so we shouldn't need to mark it so! Also, we have no way of building a "positive selling history" with PayPal unless Braintree sales count (they are part of PayPal after all) as PayPal payments don't work!


Back in October I contacted Braintree support who said:

"Hello David, 

Thanks for reaching out, I'm Kieran with Braintree Technical Support - happy to help. 

At the moment, pending transactions are not supported by Braintree. This means that if PayPal is putting your funds on hold Braintree receives a pending status and the transactions fail with a 2081 error usually. There is no way to work around this issue within Braintree, my advice would be to resolve this issue with PayPal as soon as possible.

I hope that this has helped to provide a clarification on this issue, please let me know if you have any further questions. 


Kieran W


After failing many times to talk to someone at PayPal I eventually managed to contact PayPal technical support who said:

"Hello David <removed>,

Thank you for contacting PayPal Merchant Technical Services.

Based on the information provided in the ticket it is my understanding that you are inquiring about the payment holds on incoming payments for your account. 

PayPal Merchant Technical Services provides assistance with integrating PayPal as a payment solution on the merchant's web site. Unfortunately, we don't have the account access available to research this particular issue for you, so you will need to contact PayPal Customer Service for better assistance. The PayPal Customer Service team is specially trained to address this type of account inquiry. 

William F
Merchant Technical Support


Finally today I actually managed to contact someone and was told that:

"I can see here that your PayPal account is well verified. As long as you have a confirmed email address that is same with your Braintree account there should not be a problem in receiving funds on your PayPal account. But, normally when you receive funds from a sale. They will be placed on hold for 21 days, not unless if the tracking information is provided (for transactions that needs to be tracked) or virtual services can be mark as complete by you and that prompt the buyer to confirm receipt of the services to release the funds on your PayPal account in less than 21 days."


Braintree are telling me that the funds being put on hold are the issue and causes this "2081 error" so this can't be the normal default way of this working! Has anyone else faced a similar situation or know who to contact to sort this out? Must be a common issue for those with new PayPal business accounts as Braintree just sees all PayPal payments as failed which it isn't supposed to! Since October I have disabled Paypal payments on Braintree so that we don't get support emails from people saying they have paid money through PayPal but haven't received their product. Instead we just get weekly complaints about not supporting PayPal from potential customers which we lose.


Thanks for any help anyone can provide, I am rather at the end of my tether here!


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