- Jul 27, 2006
If I understand correctly, and for lack of a better word, the funds are "held" (on the books in cyberspace) by Western Union until they are picked up in person or deposited in the receiver's bank account. After a period of time, if the funds are not picked up or the bank cannot process the transaction, the funds will be "returned" to the sender's bank or (at least I hope) be made available to the sender who paid for the transaction in cash.
it's too late to edit the previous post,so I will add that Western Union will usually indicate the transaction is "complete" as soon as the bank receives the money, but the funds usually take some time to be credited to the recipient's account. Transfers I initiate early in the morning are usually received by my bank in Argentina in a matter of minutes, but the deposit is usually made just before 6 pm the same day,
It would be accurate to say that Western Union is not holding the funds in that case. Nonetheless, the bank can refuse to deposit the funds if they have doubts about their source and then notify (I hope) Western Union who would then be obligated to give the sender a refund, either in cash or credit to the sender's bank account or credit card, something I've never had to deal with.
PS: I have picked up funds in person seveal times since I started using Western Union and I've always thought (at least to myself) that they were "holding" the funds until I picked them up in person.