Creating returns and refunds

Depending on your return policy, you might need to create returns for customers to return purchased items and refund a customer's payment. If you refund orders quickly and effectively, then you show your commitment to customer service and might encourage customers to order again.

From your Shopify admin you can create and manage your returns, send shipping instructions and return labels to your customers, track returned items, restock inspected items, and refund payments to your customers.

Creating a return for an order

You can create a return for an order to help manage items that your customer wants to return. After you create a return, you can send any return shipping information to your customer and track the return. Use the Orders page to manage all of your returns by filtering on the return status.

After you receive and inspect the returned items, you can issue a refund, and restock applicable items.

Create a return

You can create a return from an existing order that has at least one fulfilled line item that has not yet been refunded. If no line items have been fulfilled, then you should refund and restock the order instead.

If you purchased a shipping label for the order but didn't use it, then void the label before creating a return.


  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Orders.

  2. Click the order that you want to refund.

  3. Click Return.

  4. Enter the quantity of items in the order that are being returned.

  5. In the Return shipping options section, select one of the following options:

    • Select Create return label to create a return shipping label for your customer. This option is available only if your primary location and customer shipping address are both in the US.
    • Select Upload return label to upload an existing return shipping label for your customer. On the Add return label page, upload the PDF or JPEG file for your shipping label. You can enter the Tracking number and Shipping carrier if you have this information.
    • Select No return shipping to create a return without any return shipping information.
  6. Click Create return.

If you choose to create a return label, then you're prompted to create and send the label. For instructions, refer to Creating and sending return labels.

Filter orders by return status

You can filter the orders on your Orders page by return status.


  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Orders.

  2. Click the Open tab to display all open orders.

  3. Click Filters.

  4. Click Select filter, and then select Return status.

  5. Click Select value, and then select Return in progress or Returned to display the returned orders.

Cancel a return

If you create a return by mistake, or a customer has changed their mind about requesting a return, then you can cancel the return that you've created.

You can only cancel returns in the following situations:

  • The return isn't refunded.
  • The return isn't restocked.
  • The return is open and not Marked as returned.
  • The return doesn't have a Shopify Shipping return label.
  • The fulfillment for the return isn't canceled.

After you cancel a return, you can't reactivate it, but you can create a new return.


  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Orders.

  2. Click the order for the return that you want to cancel.

  3. Click the ... button, and then click Cancel return.

  4. In the dialog, click Cancel return to confirm.

Refunding an order

When you refund an order, you send payment back to the customer. You can refund an entire order or only part of an order. You can also refund an order without creating a return, but you can't create a return after a refund has been issued. In some circumstances, you can cancel an order and issue a refund.

As part of the refund process, you have the option to restock the items and to send a notification email to the customer. If there is no payment to refund, then you can restock the items from the order.

If you're using Shopify Payments and you issue a refund, then the amount is deducted from your next available payout. In most cases, the refund is labeled as Pending for up to 2 business days, and it can take up to 10 business days for your customer to receive the refunded amount.

If you're using Shopify Payments and your payout doesn't have enough funds for a return, then there are different outcomes depending on where your store is based.

  • In the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Czechia, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong SAR, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland, the balance is debited from your bank account on the day of the payout. If a negative balance payout fails, then the payout is attempted again in 3 business days. If the reattempt fails, then you need to change your Shopify Payments bank account, or repay the negative balance manually.

  • In all other countries, the remainder of the refund is deducted from the next payout until the refunded amount is covered.

If your Shopify Payments account displays a negative balance, and the refund status in the order timeline has been Pending for more than 2 business days, then you might not be able to issue a refund. Typically, future sales pay off this negative balance until your account reaches a positive balance. If you don't have enough sales coming in to pay off the negative balance, then you can make a manual repayment into the account.

Depending on the balance, and how long it's been pending, the Shopify Recovery team might get in touch directly with the store owner to address the negative balance, and to keep your Shopify Payments account in good standing.

If the Shopify Recovery team doesn't reach out, then you can email to receive a payment link, so that you can make a payment with a debit card, credit card, or wire transfer.

Refund an entire order

You can issue a full refund for all items in an order.


Refund part of an order

You can issue a partial refund for specific items in an order. You can then issue additional partial refunds until you've reached the total available to refund, which is the original amount of the order.

If a customer made a purchase using a gift card and another method of payment, then when you perform a partial refund, the refund is applied to the gift card first, until it reaches the full amount available for refund. Then rest of the refund is applied to the other payment methods. You can adjust the refund amounts manually for each payment method up to the amount that is available for each payment method. For example, if a partial refund amount of $50 is applied to the gift card, but you can apply up to $20 to a credit card, then you could split the refund by applying $30 to the gift card, and $20 to the credit card.


Restock an order

If there's no payment to refund for an order, then you can restock the items without creating a return or a refund.


  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Orders.

  2. Click the order that you want to restock.

  3. Click Restock.

  4. Enter the quantity of items in the order to restock.

  5. Click Restock items.

Mark order as returned

After you have created a return, received the items from the customer and refunded the payment, the order is complete. If you choose to restock the items as part of the refund, then the order is closed automatically. If you did not restock the items, then you can mark the order as returned after you receive the items from the customer.


  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Orders.

  2. Click the order that you want to mark as returned.

  3. Click Mark as returned.

Review an order's transaction history

The detailed transaction history for the order is displayed in the Timeline section of an order's overview page and includes returns, refunds, and restocking information.


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