Error sending Check Pay payment: QCS-0400

I tried to send the following Check Pay payment, and I got the error "Could not initiate payment ... Date to send cannot be in the past (Code: QCS-0400)."  Perhaps someone's getting confused about time zones:

Changing the "arrive by" date to 12/8 from 12/7 worked around this bug, but users shouldn't have to do that.


  • UKR
    UKR SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    I think you may be running into a situation where you don't allow for enough lead time to process this Check Pay payment.
    See this webpage for more information on lead time, the time it takes to print and mail a check and allow for it to be processed by the biller before the due date.
    Based on what I've read here in the Community, you should allow at least 10 calendar days of lead time to allow for delays.
    Alternatively, if the biller offers payment by direct debit (or APS, PAC Draft, etc.) from your checking account or a credit card, I would go that route. Avoids mailing and handling delays resulting in late fees.
  • John Ellis
    John Ellis Member ✭✭✭
    I didn't select the arrive-by date, Quicken did.  In Bills & Income, I selected the Check Pay payee, clicked Check Pay and filled in the amount, like this:

    Except that last night, it said "will be sent on 11/29/2020".  

    Quicken should pick an initial arrive-by date that won't cause an obscure, obviously incorrect error message, "Date to send cannot be in the past".  (The date-to-send was 11/29, which is not "in the past" on 11/29.)
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2020
    I didn't select the arrive-by date, Quicken did.  In Bills & Income, I selected the Check Pay payee, clicked Check Pay and filled in the amount, like this:

    Except that last night, it said "will be sent on 11/29/2020".  

    Quicken should pick an initial arrive-by date that won't cause an obscure, obviously incorrect error message, "Date to send cannot be in the past".  (The date-to-send was 11/29, which is not "in the past" on 11/29.)
    I suspect the issue may be a timezone related.  For example, 11:06 PM PST on 11/29 is 2:06 AM EST on 11/30.  Check Pay may be checking the date in its timezone and think the payment date provided would be in the past (the prior day).
  • John Ellis
    John Ellis Member ✭✭✭
    "I suspect the issue may be a timezone related."

    Agreed, as I wrote in my first post.
  • Old_Paint
    Old_Paint Member ✭✭
    The rule of thumb for direct pay check payments used to be 4 days minimum, including the current date if you're sending the instructions before noon. Now, individual banks are in control of that because they no longer use remote payment processors, and what Quicken thinks versus what the bank thinks doesn't always match, because Quicken STILL uses 4 business days delay, for the payment to post on the 5th business day, because banks won't process the batch instructions until that evening, no matter what time you send it. I know without thinking about it, that if I enter a check payment with today's date, that the bank cannot (will not) do that, but I have in the past relied on Quicken to detect and adjust when I'm making manual check payments. It does still detect and adjust, however, not like the bank wants it adjusted. The inability to synchronize scheduled payments with the bank is what I believe to be part of the problem. I should be able to request a Status Update on any payment with a SEND instruction pending, just to make sure it hasn't been already or I didn't do anything stupid in the transaction number/processing column. The SEND, APAY, and all the other instructions used to be changed to incremental transaction numbers by the banks, but now, those numbers mean nothing to Quicken, and NONE of my transactions have had numbers unless it was a check that I wrote in my check book. I think that issue might have been that there's really no way to keep numbers from the bank synchronized with a manual check book. So what? Put a letter or numeric code in front of any electronically generated payment to mark it as such. Problem solved. Put processing instructions and results in a different field other than the transaction number field. Problem solved. The columns in the display are configurable, so why not give the user more data to hide if they don't want to see it? How 'bout a better troubleshooting tool?

    I set a payment for today, Quicken adjusted it to 12/10 (4 business days starting Monday), and my bank kicked it back. I changed the date to 12/11 to make it 5 business days not counting today. Once I corrected the "too early to process" problem, my wonderful little problem of having a Send Payments button in the Things to Do panel with no payments to send has come back. I think I have finally figured out what was causing that, but have yet to figure out a solution after correcting the payments so they will go or updating them to synchronize with scheduled payments at the bank. I sent two payments, both requiring check payment. One was dated for 12/14, and the other for 12/10, as described above. The one dated for 12/14 went through, but the one for 12/10 created the error, and the error message indicated both were rejected. NOT TRUE. I checked, and the 12/14 payment is actually scheduled. After correcting the date on the payment for 12/10, Quicken marked it as sent, however, because it errored out from the bank, Quicken did not change the status on an otherwise unrelated successful transaction. The only relationship between the two payments is the instructions were sent in the same request to the bank. Quicken left the status on the payment as "Send", albeit, the bank had actually received and processed the request. I ran the update again, which showed no transactions to send (in contrast to saying I did in the Things to Do panel) which I expected, and it now refuses to allow me to check payment status for the one payment that still says Send. It's sent, already. Why can't I check status with my bank and match upcoming payments with what I have in Quicken? THAT I think is the disconnect between Quicken and the banks direct connect systems, and there is no incentive for Quicken to fix it. Think about it. If direct connect works perfectly with every bank, who needs Quicken Bill Pay or online aggregation of their banking information through Quicken's servers, which is a pay service (yes, part of that annual fee for having Quicken now). If no one needs it, no one pays for it, right? Aside from the obvious conspiratorial comments, I'd just like a simpler method to correct synchronization for upcoming payments. What I normally have to do to make the Send button go away and change the payment status to Sent is:

    PLAN A:

    1. Go to my bank's website, and delete the offending upcoming payment so that I won't have a duplicate. My bank's software most generously prevents me from sending duplicate payments. Dunno if each transaction uses a checksum identifier or what, but that starts a whole other avalanche of transaction issues. Strangely enough, though, I CAN duplicate the payment on their website. Go figger.

    2. Go back to Quicken, DELETE (not VOID) the payment, and run a One-Step Update. This can be done selectively for the bank with the issue, but will still update all accounts at that bank. That I know of, there is no way to update only one account at any bank where multiple accounts are held. No instruction is sent for the payment that still shows as SEND, so no new payment generated at the bank, and the payment cancellation notice comes back from the bank.

    3. Manually re-enter the payment reminder, generating a new instruction to Send through One-Step.

    4. Pray I've waited long enough for the bank to update the scheduled payments, and re-send the request by running One-Step again.

    PLAN B:

    1. VOID the payment in Quicken. This won't send anything to the bank because Quicken seems to think it still needs to send the original instruction (that it is not generating) to the bank.

    2. Go to the bank's website. Cancel the offending scheduled payment that was sent from Quicken, and then re-enter it on the website.

    3. Run One-Step again, and I then get an update from the bank with the scheduled payment to replace the voided transaction.

    4. Delete the voided transaction which Quicken still wants to generate a Send Payment request.

    ONLY if the desynchronized scheduled payment is deleted at the bank and in Quicken will Quicken finally give up trying to generate a send message. I fully recommend running a file SUPER Validate and Repair after doing this too. Just hold the Shift key when you poke File/File Operations/Validate.

    If all goes as intended, this normally gets rid of the annoying unnecessary Send button and gets the cute little grey envelope in the first column of the register view fixed and the status set to Sent. There seems to be an awful lot of status checking going on, yet, not enough to fix what Quicken screwed up to start with. Either of these processes are a complete PITA. The normal Reset Online Connection method does bugger all to fix this, and I've found that the Reset Online Connection is a real good way to get locked out of your account if the bank detects something hinky (or thinks it has) with multiple login attempts.

    Quicken REALLY should change the name of One-Step. It's ALWAYS a minimum of two steps when I use it. Click to initiate that one step, and then click again to confirm the instructions. I call that two steps.

    Rant over. Hope someone finds something useful in this.
  • Old_Paint
    Old_Paint Member ✭✭
    Oh, BTW, the payment in question, for 12/14 shows up in the Online Center, meaning the bank has reported the transaction back to Quicken. SO, I'm SURE that Quicken support will claim this is a bank software issue. Seems to me, that if the Online Center can see the payment scheduled, then the register should be able to be updated by Quicken, and not have to jump through a bunch of fiery hoops to fix the problem. That's just me, though.
  • I have a problem similar to Old_Paint, and it may be the same problem. Very frustrating. In my case, I have several scheduled transactions that I try to submit to my bank through direct connect Update. When at least one of the transactions has a date that seems acceptable to Quicken (but not to the bank?) the entire string of transactions appears to have bounced (SEND is not replaced with trans number in the register in Quicken). It appears that the process failed for all transactions. I can fix the offending transaction(s) date(s) and rerun Update. Interestingly, the entire string still appears in Update as needed to be sent to the bank. After Update is completed the offending transaction(s) are fixed (and receive valid check numbers in the register), but the others (which already had acceptable dates) still show SEND in the register. More interestingly, Online Center shows the acceptable transactions with valid check numbers - but the numbers are not reflected in the register. This would lead me to believe that the transactions with good dates were actually processed by the bank properly, but Quicken didn't handle the date error as a transaction level error, but as a session level error. Surely Quicken can address this (if it wants to).
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