ACH Return Rates

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This article was developed to describe ACH Return Rates.

NACHA operating rules include a set of thresholds for ACH Network return rates. These thresholds are outlined in the NACHA’s “ACH Network Risk and Enforcement” rules and are in place to help manage the quality of service provided by the network and to identify problematic and poor-quality origination activity. While some levels of returns, including funding-related issues such as insufficient funds, may be unavoidable, excessive total returns also can be indicative of problematic origination practices.

Return rates are calculated for three return categories. Unauthorized returns (Return Reason codes R05, R07, R10, R29, and R51). Administrative returns apply to debit entries returned due to administrative or account data errors (Return Reason Codes R02, R03, and R04). The overall return rate applies to all debit entries (excluding RCK entries) that are returned for any reason.

Thresholds are as follows:

  • Unauthorized debits .05%
  • Administrative Return rate 3.0%
  • Overall Return rate: 15%

How these rates are calculated


Figure 1 source

For a complete list of return rate codes see:


Managing Returns

Each month, Centrex will send out a report showing each company’s 60-day return rate broken down by unauthorized, administrative, and overall returns to help companies manage their returns and keep them below the required threshold.

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