When you try to send funds out of your account on polkadot.js.org/apps/#/accounts and get the message "balances.transferKeepAlive" the system is protecting you from potentially losing your funds. 

This happens in either one of these two situations:  

  1. You are trying to send all of your DOT out (or enough to drop your remaining balance below 1 DOT). Accounts with a balance of less than 1 DOT will be deactivated on the Polkadot network, which means that all remaining DOT in that account are burned (irrevocably lost).
  2. You are trying to send less than 1 DOT to an empty (inactive) account. This will result in a loss of your funds.

The reason for this is the required existential deposit (ED) of 1 DOT on the Polkadot network, which you can learn more about here


  1. In the first case, if you want to send all of your funds out, you can switch the "keep-alive check" off, and your transaction will go through. In that case, your account will be deactivated, but you can always reactivate it in the future with a deposit of more than 1 DOT.

    If you want to keep your account active, reduce the amount you are sending out and make sure you keep a balance of at least 1 DOT. 

  2. In the second case, make sure the destination account holds more than 1 DOT before you send small transfers (of less than 1 DOT) there. 


    Sending 0.5 DOT to an empty account will result in lost funds. The balance in the destination account will still be zero. 

    Sending 0.5 DOT to an account with a balance of 1 DOT will result in a balance of 1.5 DOT. 

    So once you made sure your destination account has enough funds, you will be able to send 0.5 DOT there. 

Here is some additional information on this from our tech lead Bill: 

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