Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card FAQ
- General Information about the Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card
- The Roles of Xerox and Comerica Bank
- Keeping Your Personal Information Secure
- Activating and Using Your Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card
- Determing and Tracking Your Refund Balance
- Debit Card Fees
- Resolving Problems
- Reason for the change
- Affected Returns
- Savings for the Commonwealth
- Refund Options
- Benefits of Each Option
- Refund Turnaround Time
The 2012-2014 Appropriations Act (also known as Virginia's budget for 2012-14) requires individual income tax refunds to be issued through direct deposit or a new prepaid debit card. Paper refund checks are no longer an option. This is a cost-savings measure - eliminating the printing and postage expense of issuing paper checks is estimated to save Virginia $200,000 per year.
Unless the direct deposit option is chosen, debit cards will be issued for refunds due on all individual income tax returns. This includes Form 760 - Resident Individual Income Tax Return, Form 760-PY - Part-Year Resident Individual Income Tax Return; Form 763 - Nonresident Individual Income Tax Return, and Form 763-S - Claim for Individual Income Tax Withheld.
Refund debit cards will be issued beginning with the returns for tax year 2012 (due May 1, 2013). For tax years prior to 2012, the refund options are direct deposit or check.
The Commonwealth has contracted with Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc., to administer the Virginia Refund Debit Card program. Xerox is making this service available to the Commonwealth at no cost.
Yes. By selecting direct deposit, you can have your refund deposited directly into your bank account. Direct deposit is the fastest way to receive your refund. If you do not select direct deposit when you file your income tax return, you will receive a debit card.
Direct deposit is the fastest method for receiving a refund, provided accurate bank account information is entered on the return. If you choose direct deposit, be sure to check your bank information carefully before filing your return. If you prefer not to use direct deposit, the refund debit card offers a more secure and convenient alternative to paper checks that also lets you avoid check-cashing fees.
It should take about the same amount of time to get your refund debit card as it did to get your check. For a faster refund, consider having your refund deposited directly into your bank account.
What is Xerox's role?
Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc., administers the Virginia Refund Debit Card through their "Go Program®." The Go Program® handles issuing the cards, as well as the activation and management of the cards. The Go Program® provides taxpayers with web-based access, Interactive Voice Response (IVR) access, call center access and many other services.
How does Comerica Bank fit into the debit card process?
Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc., partners with Comerica Bank for funds management. When an income tax refund is issued, Xerox opens an account in the taxpayer's name with Comerica Bank; the Virginia Department of Taxation then deposits the full amount of the refund in this account. These debit card bank accounts are fully protected by applicable federal and state laws.
Are Virginia Tax Refund Debit Cards secure?
Yes. The card is the equivalent of a bank account with a MasterCard® bank, and is protected by federal and state banking laws. The card must be activated before the funds can be accessed, and can only be activated by someone with access to your tax return information. The card can be activated by phone or online using personal information that only you should know. Part of the activation process includes creating a PIN, or personal identification number, that only you will know. This PIN adds an additional layer of security on the card.
How does Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc. get my tax refund information?
The Department of Taxation provides certain information to Xerox. Only the information necessary to create and issue your card(s) is provided to Xerox. Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc. is held accountable for safeguarding this information through their contract with the Commonwealth.
Are there steps I can take to safeguard my personal information?
Most importantly, only provide the information needed for activating your debit card or maintaining your account to the Go Program® through its secure website, or by calling the Go Program® at 1-855-409-0580. Do not use any other website or telephone number to contact the Go Program®. You can be assured that neither the Virginia Department of Taxation nor the Go Program® will never call or email you to ask you to provide personal information connected with your Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card. Please report any unauthorized contacts to the Virginia Department of Taxation at (804) 367-8031. Before using your card, be sure to review the card mailer for additional safety tips.
How can I turn my debit card into cash?
There are a number of easy and convenient ways to access your money:
- You can cash out your debit card in full at any MasterCard® member bank. It doesn’t have to be a bank that you have an account with, it can be any MasterCard® member bank. Look for the MasterCard® brand logo on the door. You are entitled to one free withdrawal of funds from a bank teller. Any subsequent withdrawal will have a fee. To withdraw all your money, be sure to have your card balance with you when you visit the bank.
- You can withdraw cash from any MoneyPass® ATM. You are entitled to one free ATM withdrawal of funds from a MoneyPass® ATM per month. Subsequent ATM withdrawals within the same month will have a fee. Use this link to find a MoneyPass® ATM near you.
- You can transfer the funds from the debit card to your own bank account by contacting the Go Program®. You are entitled to one free transfer of funds from the debit card. Any subsequent transfers will incur a fee. Transfer of funds is only allowed from the Go Program® website or the Go Program® customer service center.
- You can use the Debit Card to make purchases. This is free every time. You can also request cash back at point-of-sale for free.
Can I bring my debit card to the Department of Taxation to cash it?
No. Your Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card can only be cashed using the methods described above.
How do I activate my card?
Visit the Go Program's® website, or call (855) 409-0580 and follow the prompts. You'll be asked to verify who you are by providing certain personal information that only you should know. You will also be prompted to create your four-digit PIN.
You must contact the Go Program® to activate your card. Neither the Go Program® nor the Department of Taxation will ever call or email you to ask for your personal information in connection with activating your refund debit card, unless you have specifically asked to be contacted to resolve a problem. If you receive an unsolicited call or email asking you for personal information, you should refuse to respond and report the incident to the Department of Taxation at (804) 367-8031 immediately.
How can I find out the refund amount that is on the card?
The refund amount is provided to you at the end of the activation process.
Can I add additional money to my card balance after the card is activated?
The card will be issued with the full amount of your tax refund on it. No additional money can be deposited to increase the card's balance. Once you’ve used the funds on your card, the card is closed and you should dispose of it.
What happens to my money if I never activate my card?
Debit cards that are not activated within 12 months of being issued are turned over to the Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of the Treasury, Unclaimed Property Division. It’s still your money but you will need to contact the Unclaimed Property to have the funds reissued to you.
Similarly, if you do activate your card, whether you use it a few times or not at all, any funds that remain on the card after 12 consecutive months of no activity, are also turned over to Unclaimed Property.
Do refund debit cards expire?
Yes. Your activated card will expire three years from the date it was issued. If you still have a balance available on the card, Xerox will send you a replacement card.
Is there a fee to activate my card?
No, activation of the card is free.
How soon after I activate my card can I start using it?
You can use your card as soon as you activate it – the funds are available immediately.
Where can I use my refund debit card?
Any place that accepts MasterCard®! The card can be cashed at any MasterCard® bank, or used like a regular debit card at retail stores, ATMs, and online. You may, however, encounter difficulty using your refund debit card at certain vending machines or to pay for gasoline at the pump.
Can I use my refund debit card to pay for part of a transaction, then use cash or another card to pay the rest?
Yes. Refund debit cards do support this type of transactions, which is called a "split tender" transaction.
Is my Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card transferable?
No. If you want to use the balance on your refund debit card to pay a bill other than in an online transaction, or to give cash to a third party, see How Can I turn my debit card into cash?, above.
When will I find out the amount of my refund that is on the card?
The card will be issued with the full amount of your tax refund on it. This amount is provided to you at the end of the activation process. Please note this amount, and compare it with the amount of refund you were expecting.
If there is a discrepancy between the refund amount on your card, and the amount you were expecting, you should receive a letter from the Department explaining why the amounts are different within 10 days. If you do not receive this letter, please contact the Department.
How can I track the available balance on my refund debit card once I start using it?
You can keep track of your balance on the Go Program® website, or by calling the Go Program® at 1-855-409-0580. You may incur a fee for making more than a set number of calls each month, so you should review the complete schedule of fees before calling.
Are there any fees associated with using my refund debit card?
There are many ways to use your refund debit card for free. Fees do apply to some transactions, though. Please review the complete schedule of fees so there are no surprises.
Is there a fee to activate my card?
No, activation of the card is free.
Is there an inactivity fee or an account maintenance fee if I don't use my card for awhile?
Once you have activated your card, if you do not use your card for six consecutive months, an inactivity fee of $3 per month will be deducted from your balance. You can avoid this fee by making sure you use your card at least once every six months.
Is there an inactivity fee if I don’t activate my refund debit card immediately?
The inactivity fee does not apply if you have not activated your card. However, if you wait longer than 12 months to activate the card, the funds may be turned over to the Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of the Treasury, Unclaimed Property Division.
- Debit Card Not Received
- Refund Amount Not What I Expected
- Lost or Stolen Card
- Lost or Forgotten PIN
- Card Does Not Work
Contact the Department of Taxation to determine whether your refund has actually been processed. You will be given instructions if there are further actions you need to take.
If there is a discrepancy between the refund amount on your card, and the amount you were expecting, you should receive a letter from the Department of Taxation explaining why the amounts are different within 10 days. If you do not receive this letter, please contact the Department.
Report a lost or stolen card to the Go Program® immediately through its secure website, or by calling 1-855-409-0580. There may be a fee for replacing the card.
If my refund debit card is lost or stolen, can it be replaced with a check instead of a new card?
No. You should report a lost or stolen card to the Go Program® immediately through its secure website, or by calling 1-855-409-0580. There may be a fee for replacing the card.
Contact the Go Program® for assistance through its secure website, or by calling 1-855-409-0580.
First, make sure you have activated the card as instructed on the card mailer. If the card was properly activated, contact the Go Program® through its secure website, or by calling 1-855-409-0580 for assistance.
Last Updated 4/4/2013 15:34