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Bill Pay Tips

How to make payments more effectively.

Whether you need to add a new payee or remedy a payment issue, we’ve got advice for your payment-related needs. Browse the topics below to find the one that’s right for your situation.

Bill Pay Timing


These tips will help you ensure your payments arrive in time.

  • Know whether each of your bill pay recipients is receiving paper check payments or electronic payments. Within online banking, navigate to Payments, Payees, select a Payee, then expand Account Information.
    NOTE: When creating a new bill pay recipient, the system displays default information (e.g., paper check and eight business days' lead time) until the day after your first bill payment has been sent. The system automatically determines if the payments will go electronically or as paper checks, based on the first payment you send to that recipient. So, to accurately understand how a new bill pay recipient will receive payments and the lead time you should apply, be sure to check the system per the instructions above a day or more after you send the first payment to that recipient. It is important to do this before scheduling another payment to ensure you allow sufficient lead time, or so that you can adjust the send date, if necessary, if you initially scheduled a recurring payment.
  • Schedule/send payments with sufficient lead time for payment to reach merchant/be processed by due date.
  • For electronic payments, schedule them up to three business days in advance of your payment due date.
  • For check payments, schedule them a minimum of eight business days in advance of your due date to allow for current USPS delivery times, and time for the merchant to process/post the payment to your account. We will update our system prompt later this year to reflect this new lead time (instead of five days).
  • To edit the send date on a recurring bill payment, go to Payments, Upcoming & Scheduled, Choose Payment, Edit Series, Change Send Date, Next, Submit.
  • Same-day bill payment can be canceled if completed by 6:00 pm CT/7:00 pm ET by contacting the Business Service Center or Client Services.
  • Payments scheduled after 8:00 pm CT/9:00 pm ET are processed the next business day.
  • For future-dated payments (single and recurring), funds are withdrawn on the payment date.
  • If the scheduled payment is on a non-business day or holiday, funds are withdrawn the following business day.

Add or Update a Payee

  • When adding a new payee, be sure to include the full account number as it appears on your statement. This will help ensure your payments get sent via the most effective way that the merchant permits, and it will help with timely posting of funds to your merchant account after the merchant has received the payment.
  • Input the full address, including ZIP Code + 4, that appears on your billing statement when setting up a payee. Like above, this will help avoid issues with payment posting timeliness.
  • In the event you need to change the address or account number for an existing payee, you will need to create a new payee. We do not recommend deleting existing payees as it will also remove any payment history for that payee. Instead, edit the payee nickname to denote it as an "old" or "unused" payee to retain the payment history and help avoid future use after you create the new payee record.

Bill Pay Dispute or Service Request


If something goes wrong with an online banking bill payment, there are three ways to initiate a dispute/service request:

  • Self-service. From within online banking: Tap More, Self-Service, Self-Service Forms, Transaction Dispute, then select Online Bill Pay Claim in menu.
  • Contact your local banker or banking center.
  • Call Client Services.

There are four types of bill pay disputes/service requests (select the appropriate one to avoid delays):

  • Payee Did Not Receive Payment: Use if your payment was not received by the payee after sufficient time.
  • Stop Payment: Use to cancel a sent bill payment (paper check only) that you don’t want the payee to receive.
  • Late Fees Incurred: When the payment was sent with adequate lead time, but payment was not received by the due date and fees are incurred due to a bank error; you are requesting the Bank to cover those fees.
  • Photocopy Request: When you require a copy/proof that you sent a payment.

While researching your dispute, First Horizon or our bill pay service provider may need to reach out via telephone to gather additional information from you. In this event, the caller ID may not reflect First Horizon.

Bill Pay Returns


What clients need to understand to help avoid late payments or fees with their merchants:

  • For various reasons, a payment may not reach the merchant, or the merchant may be unable to process it, and thus the payment is returned. A returned payment may be received at any point after the client submits the payment (days later, weeks later, or longer). Payments are returned by merchants, USPS, or our bill payment service provider.
  • If a payment is returned, First Horizon credits the client’s account and notifies the client via email.
  • Notices are sent to the email address on file within the client’s online banking profile.
  • Clients should ensure their email address listed in their online banking profile is current and should check their email regularly to ensure prompt knowledge of any returned bill payments so they can address any late payment scenarios with the merchant immediately.
  • The email will include information about why the payment was returned and instructions on what to do before submitting another bill payment under that payee/recipient record. The payee/recipient cannot be edited, and it is recommended to set up a new payee/recipient record for that merchant before sending a new payment.

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