ADVERTISING DISCLOSURE: is an independent, advertising-supported web site. receives compensation from most issuers whose offers appear on our site. Compensation fromour advertising partners may impact how and where their products appear on our site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within review lists. has not reviewed all available credit card offers in the marketplace.

What Does a Negative Balance on a Credit Card Mean?

The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

It is possible to have a negative balance on a credit card, which has probably happened to you once already. A few conditions might cause a negative credit card balance, but don't worry. It just means that your credit card company owes you money, and not vice versa.

Here you will know how a negative credit card balance happens, how it affects your credit scores and what can you do about a negative balance.

What is a negative balance on a credit card?

A negative balance is when your balance is below zero, which means you will see a minus symbol in front of a dollar amount (e.g. -$100) in your credit card statement. It basically means that your credit card issuer owes you money.

Typically, this happens when you pay more than you owe, if you have some returns, or other credits to your account. The extra credit is not bad for your account. If you continue using your credit card, future purchases will be added to any negative balance.

How can you get a negative balance on a credit card?

A negative credit card balance is not a common situation, but it may happen from time to time, especially if you have a habit of paying off the card balance in full each month.

Here are some reasons a negative credit balance can happen:

- You overpaid your credit card bill: If you accidentally pay your credit card company more than your current balance, you'll end up with a negative balance. It is also possible to overpay when you use an autopay feature to pay your bill.

- You got a refund for returned purchases: If you pay off your card balance before you get a refund or if the refund is more than your current balance, the refund will result in a negative balance.

- You redeemed rewards for a statement credit: If you have a rewards credit card and redeem rewards for a statement credit, you could get a credit that exceeds your current balance. That is especially true when you have a habit of paying off the card balance in full each month.

- You have waived or canceled fees: If you've paid your credit card annual fee or late fees and the issuer waived them, it can result in a negative balance.

- You have a fraudulent/disputed charge removed: If you pay off your card balance and a fraudulent or disputed charge is credited to your account by your credit card issuer, it could lead to a negative balance.

What can you do about a negative balance on a credit card?

You don't really have to do anything, but there are some options. If you want to use a negative balance, here is what you can do:

- Request a deposit: contact your credit card issuer to see if you can request a refund. Your issuer may deposit the negative balance amount to your bank account, send you a check, money order, or cash. The refund is usually sent within seven business days of getting your request.

Even if you do not request a refund, your credit card issuer must try to issue a refund if you do not make any other purchases with your card for more than six months.

- Make a purchase: you can simply spend the negative balance. Just continue making purchases using your credit card like you normally do, and new purchases will first apply to your negative balance until you won't have it.

Best Savings Accounts from Our Partners

our choice

2.00% Annual Percentage Yield (APY)4
Monthly Fee
Minimum Balance to earn APY
No minimum balance requirements
Minimum Deposit
  • No Monthly Fees.
  • Grow your savings automatically.3
  • Signing up takes 2 minutes!
  • Chime Checking Account is required to be eligible for a Savings Account.
  • Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC.
  • 3Save When I Get Paid automatically transfers 10% of your direct deposits of $500 or more from your Checking Account into your Savings Account.
  • 4The Annual Percentage Yield ("APY") for the Chime Savings Account is variable and may change at any time. The disclosed APY is effective as of September 20, 2023. No minimum balance required. Must have $0.01 in savings to earn interest.

our choice

5.21% APY with $1,000 balance*
Monthly Fee
Minimum Balance to earn APY
Minimum Deposit
  • Earn 5.21% APY, on $1,000 or more*
  • No monthly account fees**
  • FDIC - Insured through Cross River Bank***

our choice

Monthly Fee
Minimum Balance to earn APY
Minimum Deposit
  • Federally insured by NCUA.
  • Start saving with as little as $1 minimum deposit.
  • 24/7 online access.
  • 4.50% APY certificate, 1.4X6 higher than national average.

How can a negative balance impact your credit score?

Typically, negative balances don't affect credit. Most credit models see negative balances as a $0 balance. This means a negative balance won't hurt your credit scores. In fact, a negative balance could actually have a positive impact on your credit scores.

For example, a negative balance could potentially be good for your credit utilization (the percentage of your available credit you are using). It's recommended to keep your credit utilization below 30%, overall and on each individual revolving credit account. And since you have a negative balance, your credit utilization could be less than 30% - which is good for your credit scores.

Bottom line

Don't worry if you have a negative balance. It may happen from time to time. It doesn't hurt you, but if you feel uncomfortable, you have options. Remember, it's your money. Don't hesitate to request a refund, or just continue using your credit card as you normally do.


News: Apple Discontinued Pay Later Feature -
Jun 19, 2024

Apple Discontinued Pay Later Feature

Apple is no longer offering new loans through Apple Pay Later, its buy-now-pay-later program. The...

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review: Big Rewards and World Elite Mastercard Benefits

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review: Big Rewards and World Elite Mastercard Benefits

Citi waived goodbye to their Citi Premier® Card (expired offer) and presented a new...


Cash Back
Balance Transfer
Low Interest
Fair Credit

questions ABOUT

Can I get money back if I overpay my credit card?

Absolutely! If for some reason you have a negative balance on a credit card and you do not want to leave it alone, you can get the money you overpaid back. To do that, you need to contact your...

Read more
My credit score is poor. Which credit card will raise my credit scores quickly?

First of all, note that improving your credit score is not a quick process. It may take up to a couple of years to turn bad credit into good credit. But if you want to improve your credit score faster, keep your credit...

Read more
How to get the best credit card?

With the credit card issuers coming up with newer plans and strategies every passing day, there is no dearth of good deals in the market today. But not all deals are suitable for all customers. There are many factors...

Read more
See all questions


Ask our Experts and get free advice to your email!


comments ABOUT

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer(s). Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer(s), and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer(s). Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate information, however all information is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for the terms & conditions. All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.


Please enter your question and contact information so that we could send our answer to you by e-mail. Note: Please do not include personal information such as your SSN#, credit or debit account numbers.


* - required fields

By submitting your question, you agree to the following:*

By providing my email information, I authorize Credit-Land to email me regarding products and services Credit-Land provides. I acknowledge that this consent may be removed at my request but that until such consent is revoked, I may receive emails from Credit-Land.

Here at we will answer all questions to the best of our knowledge and understanding, but we are not legally accredited professionals. We assume no liability for actions resulting from our advice and cannot guarantee the accuracy of information in all cases. Please seek appropriate professional or legal advice when needed.

Questions submitted to may be posted to our website with your first name, and may be edited for length and clarity. Please do not submit your Social Security number, credit or debit card number, or bank account number to us - though we will never share your name or email with anyone, sensitive information should never be posted to an FAQ form. We are not a bank or a credit card issuer, and we do not have access to your account information.

Thank You, Your Question Has Been Successfully Sent!
All these fields are optional
your credit history
Excellent (750-850)
Good (700-749)
Fair (640-699)
Bad (350-639)
No Credit History
Traveling with Credit Cards: how to Save and Earn Rewards
How to Take Advantage of Credit Card Rewards
Credit Cards for Building Credit
Business Credit Card Offers
How to Save with Balance Transfer Credit Cards
Special Credit Card Offers for Students
Credit Cards with Low Interest Rates
Benefits of Credit Cards with No Annual Fee
Best Credit Card Offers with 0% Intro APR
By providing this information you help us make our news letters more useful and informative. Thank you!