Recently some new rules have been introduced by card associations into transaction processing industry. As a result, card associations charge additional fees for repeated submission of declined transactions with some specific decline codes.
On the most general level, card transaction declines can be classified as hard or soft ones. A soft decline signifies that if the declined transaction is reattempted at a later time, it can be approved, possibly after some conditions are met and\or some corrections are introduced into transaction or cardholder data. Hard declines indicate that there is no point in re-submitting the respective transactions, as they can never be approved.
Payment card decline codes allow submitters to tell soft declines from hard declines, and determine, if it is worth trying to re-submit respective transactions. All payment card decline code meanings are approximately the same across payment systems, because the reasons behind declines are common.
Some of the most common payment card transaction decline codes include insufficient funds, card stolen, card lost, invalid expiration date, incorrect data formats, no active account associated with the card, account frozen, duplicate transaction submission, and others. A more detailed explanation of different payment card decline codes can be found in the respective
article Payment Card Transaction Decline Codes on Paylosophy.