Can You Get Your Money Back From PayPal if You Get Scammed?

Regardless of how useful it can be, online transactions can be a dangerous process where you risk losing money. For that reason, security is the primary aspect of online transactions by any provider.

Although one of the most popular payment processors available today, PayPal is known for its good protection from scams. However, online transactions do not always go right and it happens that people get scammed, so it is important to know what to do in that case. So what happens if someone gets scammed? Will the money be refunded? What is there you can do, and what should you expect from the other side? On top of that, how long it might take until your dispute gets resolved? Well, you are about to find out in this article.

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Refund Doesn’t Always Work

First of all, people must understand that PayPal does not always give refunds despite its reputation. If your payment method was PayPal and the transaction happens to be fraudulent, PayPal will refund you only if well-defined criteria are met. The problem is – people don’t know until it doesn’t happen to them.

Where to start?

If you happened to be a victim of a cyber scam, you should know what are the first steps you need to make to resolve the issue. The first step is to check if the payment’s status is ”pending”. If your payment hasn’t been collected by then, you can get your money back by ”canceling payment’. Meanwhile, the nature of malicious sellers is as such that they:

  • don’t wait too much and rather pick up the money as soon as it is available
  • will do everything to fight your dispute

Don’t hurry with radical moves

Before you run to PayPal, it is advised to contact the seller. In many instances, the problem turned out to be an easily fixable misunderstanding, with no need for the involvement of other actors. If nothing works, then follow these steps to start a dispute:

  • Click on “Report a Problem”
  • select transaction
  • explain what you want to dispute about
  • open the dispute

Keep in mind that you will be asked to provide proof of what happened, just like the seller. Once both stories are reviewed, the PayPal team will decide who gets the funds back. However, there are more potential scenarios. For instance, if the seller does not react to the dispute you opened, you might as well get refunded immediately. The other scenario is that you wait 20 days until everything is reviewed and a decision is made.


Even though PayPal stands for a highly secure payment method, scams happen, so don’t expect that PayPal will refund you money that is lost just like that. Moreover, PayPal’s policies imply that the victims of scams get their money back. The key is in fact that PayPal treats disputes on a case-by-case method.