Our Buffalo, New York partners at WIVB spoke with a woman who was struggling to get her tax refund from a virtual bank. Her father had helped prepare her taxes, e-filing and agreeing to receive her refund on a pre-paid debit card. The card never showed up at her home, and the woman’s mother only realized months later that she had actually received it instead in an envelope that would not have suggested it was a tax refund. After finally obtaining the card, the woman has struggled further — She can’t collect the funds because the online account keeps rejecting her information. The IRS reports that tax return fraud has been increasingly severe in recent years, so identity protection measures have been implemented. In this case, it seems to be working too well and preventing a taxpayer from rightfully collecting her own money. The problem is worse because the virtual bank that issued the card does not have a physical presence where she lives in New York. She is trying to speak to a person at their physical location in California, and WIVB is working to help her.
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