Available Balance Calculation

Learn how transaction events affect a card's available balance

On this page, we'll work through some examples to show how a card's available balance changes as events occur.

In each example, we will assume we have a new card with an available balance of 1000 USD.

EventCard Available Balance (USD)
Card Issued1000

Regular Authorizations

Suppose the card makes a purchase of 200 USD:

EventAmount (USD)Card Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Successful200800

There are three possibilities:

  1. The authorization settles for the same as the authorized amount (e.g. 200 USD)
  2. The authorization settles for less than the authorized amount (e.g. 150 USD instead of 200 USD)
  3. The authorization settles for more than the authorized amount (e.g. 250 instead of

Regardless, the available balance is adjusted based on the settled amount:

EventAmount (USD)Card Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Settled200 [same]800 [no change: 1000 - 200 = 800]
Authorization Settled150 [less than]850 [increased: 1000 - 150 = 850]
Authorization Settled250 [more than]750 [decreased: 1000 - 250 = 750]

Notice that if the authorization settles for the authorized amount, the available balance is unchanged by the settlement.

Multi-Settlement Authorizations

When an authorization occurs which has multiple settlements, each settlement will impact the available balance. Let's take a look at 1000 USD authorization with three settlements:

EventAmount (USD)Card Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Successful10000 [1000 - 1000 = 0]
Authorization Settled400600 [1000 - 400 = 600]
Authorization Settled380220 [600 - 380 = 220]
Authorization Settled230(10) [220 -230 = -10]

Notice that the final settlement causes the card's available balance to become negative, meaning it is overdrawn.

Voided Authorizations

In the event where an authorization is voided, the available balance is immediately updated by the voided amount:

EventAmount (USD)Card Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Successful200800 [1000 - 200 = 800]
Authorization Voided2001000 [800 + 200 = 1000]


When a refund occurs, the refunded amount is not added back to the available balance until the refund clears (settles):

EventAmount (USD)Card Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Successful200800 [1000 - 200 = 800]
Refund Authorized200800 [no change]
Refund Settled2001000 [800 + 200 = 1000]

When a virtual card is refunded, the refunded amount will be included in your daily total activity calculation (funds are "returned" to you as part of the accounting process).


Refunds and Lodged Cards

Refunds to lodged cards are only added back to the available balance if the limit window is set to LIFETIME

Limit Window Effects

Lodged cards can have DAILY, WEEKLY, MONTHLY, or LIFETIME limit windows. A card's available balance is reset at the beginning of each limit window. For more details see Limit Windows

For example, let's say our card with 1000 USD available balance has a DAILY window, then its available balance would reset each day:

EventAmount (USD)DateCard Available Balance (USD)
Authorization Cleared2002022-01-01 13:00 UTC800
Limit Reset-2022-01-02 00:00 UTC1000
Authorization Cleared1002022-01-02 02:00 UTC900