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Understanding "Last Update" in Swift Payment Tracking

When you track a SWIFT payment, you might come across a term called "Last Update." This term holds significant importance as it provides crucial information about the state of the payment. In this article, we will delve into the concept of "Last Update" in SWIFT payment tracking and understand its implications.

"Last Update" in the context of SWIFT payment tracking refers to the most recent status update or message received from the intermediary banks involved in the payment process. During an international funds transfer, the payment typically passes through multiple correspondent banks before reaching its final destination. Each intermediary bank processes the payment and provides updates about its status to the originating and beneficiary banks.

If the payment stuck in one of the banks, often this date stays unchanged for a long time. Usually it means that the payment is under manual compliance procedures. Compliance officer might request information from the other banks or from beneficiary if the payment reached the destination bank.

Here we have built a list of commonly asked questions about Last Update term:

If Last Update doesn't change for a long time, what should I do?

Sender should take MT103 form from his bank and provide to a beneficiary. Beneficiary should take MT103 form and all supporting documents and check the payment status with his/her bank. Often payment is on the final stage in the beneficiary's bank and they simply need to check documents for compliance.

If it doesn't help and more than one month passed since sending a payment, sender can ask for a payment investigation or a payment recall in his/her bank. Read more about why payment stuck.

If my payment is in the status RJCT, will Last Update change when payment returns back to the sender?

Most of the time - no. RJCT is the final state of the payment and you won't see any updates in the tracker.

My payment stuck for a long time, but today Last Update changed. Does it mean my payment went to the next bank in a chain?

It could be, however sometimes it could mean that a compliance officer simply took a look at your payment in a same bank. Also I have met a bank which update this date almost on a daily basis without any real changes or actions.

How often you refresh the info? Could it be possible that actually payment has updated the status and went further?

We get all the info in a real-time. However sometimes payments become untrackable from a certain point, for example, they can go out of a SWIFT network.

Please keep in mind that we show Last update date in our SWIFT tracker in the format DD.MM.YYYY. So it is 26th of July 2023 in the example above.

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