How-To Return Values From Action


This how-to demonstrates how a smart contract developer implements return values from an action.

In order to accomplish this, use the return statement and pass the desired returned value, which can be of any C++ primitive type, a standard library type, or a user defined type.


  • Set your EOSIO development environment. Refer to the Get Started Guide.
  • You have a smart contract, let’s call it smrtcontract, and it builds without error.
  • You have an action, let’s call it checkwithrv, from which you want to return a value of a user defined type action_response.

Refer to the following example.

struct action_response
  uint16_t id;
  std::pair<int, std::string> status;

class [[eosio::contract]] smrtcontract : public contract {
     using contract::contract;

     action_response checkwithrv( name nm );


Complete the following steps to return an instance of action_response from the checkwithrv action:

  1. Create an instance of the action_response C++ defined structure.
  2. Initialize its data members based on the action’s business logic.
  3. Use return statement and pass as a parameter the instance created and initialized in previous steps.
action_response smrtcontract::checkwithrv( name nm ) {
  print_f("Name : %\n", nm);

  action_response results; = 1;
  if (nm == "hello"_n) {
     results.status = {0, "Validation has passed."};
  else {
     results.status = {1, "Input param `name` not equal to `hello`."};
  return results; // the `set_action_return_value` intrinsic is invoked automatically here

For a complete example of a smart contract that implements an action which returns a value see the hello example smart contract.

Next Steps

The following options are available when you complete the procedure:

  • Compile the smart contract and deploy it to the EOSIO testnet or any EOSIO based blockchain.
  • Use the cleos command to send the checkwithrv action to the smart contract and observe the returned value in the cleos output.
  • Use other means (e.g. programmatically) to send the checkwithrv action to the smart contract and observe the returned value in the action trace.
Returned values from actions availability

The returned values from actions are only available to the clients sending the action via the RPC API. Currently, there is no support for an inline action to be able to use the return value, because inline actions don't execute synchronously.