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Dispute Cancellation FAQ

Find answers to commonly asked questions about dispute cancellations and what to do when your customer cancels with their bank.

What happens when a customer cancels a dispute?

If your customer decides they no longer want to dispute a payment, they can contact their bank and ask for a previously opened dispute to be cancelled. Once your customer successfully cancels a dispute, their bank will send the disputed funds back to your Square account.

However, the customer’s bank’s process of returning funds doesn’t occur as quickly as we’d like it to, so we’ve built a process to help you get funds returned to your account sooner.

Steps to Confirm that a Dispute has been Cancelled

If you have been in touch with your customer directly and are able to come to an agreement, you can request that they contact their bank to cancel the dispute. This can be done any time during the dispute process before it is closed.

Next, upload evidence for the dispute if you haven’t done so already. While a customer may state that they intend to cancel a dispute, we recommend that you respond to the dispute with evidence as if the normal dispute process will be followed. This gives you a greater chance of winning the dispute in the event the customer changes their mind, or forgets to reach out to their bank to cancel the dispute.

The dispute cancellation process can look different, depending on the card type used by the customer (American Express, Visa, Mastercard, etc). You can see the card type used by viewing the Square receipt for the transaction from your Disputes Dashboard.

Follow the instructions below based on the type of payment card that your customer used:

Customer used an American Express payment card

If your customer made the purchase using an American Express card, follow these steps to have the dispute cancelled and any held funds returned to your account.

  1. Contact your customer: If your customer agrees to cancel the dispute, ask them to contact American Express and request for the dispute to be cancelled.
  2. Contact Square to inform us of the cancellation: Once your customer confirms with you that they’ve successfully contacted American Express and cancelled the dispute, inform us by selecting the dispute in question from your Disputes Dashboard, scrolling down to “Cardholder cancelled dispute?” and selecting Cardholder cancelled.

Once you’ve notified Square, our team will contact American Express to confirm that the customer has successfully cancelled the dispute and we will update you via email within 5 business days.

Customer used a Mastercard, Visa, or other non-American Express payment card

If your customer made the purchase using a Mastercard, Visa, or other non-American Express card, follow these steps to have the dispute cancelled and any held funds returned to your account.

  1. Contact your customer: If your customer agrees to cancel the dispute, ask them to contact their card issuing bank and request for the dispute to be cancelled. Your customer must also request a cancellation letter from their bank - this is evidence that the cancellation was processed successfully. The cancellation letter is an official letter or email from the bank. It cannot be replaced with an email or text message written by the buyer.

Note: Without a cancellation letter, you will not be able to move forward with the cancellation process.

  1. Ask your customer to send you a copy of the cancellation letter: The letter your customer shares with you must contain their bank’s letterhead and must be in JPEG, JPG, PDF, PNG, TIFF, or HEICC format. The max file size is 50 MB.
  2. Send a copy of the cancellation letter to Square: Once you have a copy of the cancellation letter, you can send it to us by selecting your dispute in question from your Disputes Dashboard, scrolling down to “Cardholder cancelled dispute?” and selecting Upload cancellation letter.

Can I cancel the dispute on the customer's behalf?

No, the customer will need to contact their card-issuing bank directly to cancel the dispute.

What happens after I inform Square?

If you notified us about an American Express dispute cancellation, we will contact them and update you within 5 business days. If they confirm the cancellation, we will release the payment hold on your account, if there is one.

If you submitted a cancellation letter, we will let you know within 5 business days. If the letter confirms that the dispute has been cancelled, we will release the payment hold on your account, if there is one.

Where can I check the status of the cancellation?

You can track the progress in your Disputes Dashboard.

If you’re unsure if a resolution has been reached, please contact Square Support to check on the status of your case.

Holds on Disputed Funds

Square holds disputed funds for the duration of the dispute process, and will release the funds back to you as soon as we receive notice that the dispute has been resolved in your favour. If the case is resolved in your customer’s favour, the held funds will be returned to your customer. To learn more about these holds, see our Dispute Information Request Form FAQ.

Learn how to prevent payment disputes via our Support Centre.

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