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No payment completed IPNs? (Pay status: unknown)

    Sep 27 2016 16:17:03



    Join date : 2009-05-22      Posts : 8

    Our client is getting loads of PayPal orders coming through with "Pay status: Unknown".

    When I look in PayPal I can see the transactions associated with those orders are completed. I can see in the IPN history that the call to has completed with HTTP response code 200. So why hasn't our cart registered these as successfully paid?

    Looking at the IPN call parameters, I can see that the IPN notifications associated with these orders have contained payment_status=Pending, and the transactions have been done in two stages: "Interchange plus settlement hold" and then typically two days later "Interchange plus settlement release". There doesn't seem to be an IPN call associated with this second transaction.

    I have no idea what "Interchange plus" signifies - from Googling it, it seems to be some model of transaction pricing but I don't know why it holds up transactions. It only seems to be used for people with unconfirmed addresses (= no PayPal account?) But it sounds like this should be affecting more people. Does Mal's Cart have a solution?

    Castlegate IT

    Sep 27 2016 16:52:31



    Join date : 2008-09-18      Posts : 3281

    My guess is the 2 day delay in sending back the result to Mals, by that time the cart would be dead.

    Having trouble with a form or need one building?
    Fast turnaround, but I do charge :)

    Mal's Forms / Scripts and the syntax are here.

    Sep 27 2016 17:03:53



    Join date : 2009-05-22      Posts : 8

    No I don't think it's that - as I said, there's no IPN call in the IPN history associated with the change of transaction status. It looks like PayPal isn't even bothering to make an IPN call.

    Here's a possibility: it might be that since Mal's is setting the IPN endpoint dynamically, and no URL is set in the PayPal profile, PayPal doesn't know where to make an IPN call to when the status changes a few days later. I'll try manually entering the IPN endpoint in the PayPal IPN settings, see if that helps.

    Castlegate IT

    Oct 03 2016 12:08:45



    Join date : 2009-05-22      Posts : 8

    That didn't work (it was a long shot).

    It seems that PayPal is not sending IPNs when credit/debit payments have cleared. The only notification we get is 'Pending'. I think this is going to need an update from Mal's (though it does seem that the fault lies with PayPal). At least one other person has reported this in the forum.

    Castlegate IT

    Oct 03 2016 21:57:46


    Erica Ratcliffe

    Join date : 2011-04-25      Posts : 38

    hi there, my website payments are showing up as unverified payments in red in 'my orders'. I have replicate this myself by placing an order on my website but not completing checkout. so the orders showing in red are orders that customers have abandon before checkout. is there a way i can stop the abandon orders showing in 'my orders' in mal? thank you.

    Oct 05 2016 16:09:08



    Join date : 2009-05-22      Posts : 8

    Erika - I think the short answer is "no". I think this has been raised a few times before on this forum (always worth searching before posting) for example:

    My issue is different from this: as of a few months ago people paying from a card without using a PayPal account seem to all be recorded with an 'unknown' status in Mal's.

    I've raised it with PayPal, and had no reply (imagine my surprise...)

    Castlegate IT

    Nov 01 2016 12:57:41



    Join date : 2009-05-22      Posts : 8

    I also posted this question into the PayPal community forum - they have responded acknowledging the problem:

    "We are aware of this and raised this internally. At the moment the system doesn't send an IPN in this scenario. There is an ask in with our development teams to have an IPN issued once the IC+ payment clears, unfortunately I don't have an ETA though. In the interim, you could optionally use the GetTransactionDetails API to ping for transaction status after 2 days to confirm completion."


    - so a potential workaround for Mal's but it looks like a job of work.

    Should also have added that the whole 'Interchange plus' thing seems to be a pricing model you can select for PayPal Pro accounts, and I'm not sure if it applies outside of the UK/EU.

    Some more information about it here:

    Castlegate IT