Accountnow Prepaid Card / froze account with $8000 irs refund
On January 31, 2011, I received $8000 for a tax return that was mistakingly deposited into my 17 year old brothers Accountnow prepaid card account ending in 6810 instead of my mom's. She had prepared my taxes for me as she has done for the past 3 years using turbo tax. We usually put the money in her account because I live out of state she would just wire me money if i needed it. My mom, brother and sister all have their own accountnow prepaid cards. she likes that because she can do online transfers to their cards from hers rather than give them cash. She filed the taxes on Jan 23 and put my brothers account number on my tax return by mistake When she realized it was the wrong account number she called the IRS but it was too late because the refund had already been processed. On The morning of January 31, 2012 my brother called me to tell me my $7508 federal and $558 state tax refund had been deposited in his account. I had asked my brother to withdraw some funds and to send it Western Union so i could get a bus ticket back home to Boston where my family lives. I was living in North Carolina but needed to come home because my baby was sick and in The Boston Children's Hospital for past 3 Months. My mom and brother withdrew $800 from the account via ATM and sent me the money via Western Union so that i could buy my ticket in Franklin NC. I picked up the money using my valid and current state picture ID and headed home to Boston. During my 24 hour unpleasant bus ride, my brother had called to say his card and online account were frozen. I told him to have our mom call and find out what was wrong. My mom and brother called and spoke to customer service and they explained suspicion of tax fraud activity on the account. It was suspended and we could not access the funds or have the restriction removed unless we provided them with documents proving our identities. I knew i would not be able to do this until the next day as i was on the bus in route to Boston. I asked them for the customer service number and I immediately called for fear of getting stranded with no money. I wanted the hold released. I thought that seeing as i was the beneficiary of the tax return i figured if i had proved my information and explained the situation they would remove the hold. Was i Ever WRONG ! We have spoken to the company many times since then asking to remove the restriction and they proceeded to shuffle from one person to another saying only to fax numerous documents and the account would be reviewed by the Risk Department and someone would get back to us in 2 days. I had stated that since i was the beneficiary of the tax refund I would send over the requested documents hoping i would get the funds released to me pending verification. I sent my picture Id, social security card, W-2, Tax return document, receipts showing the ATM withdrawal was used to send me money via Western Union that i picked up in my name using my ID and the Western Union Receipt. We assured them that there was no fraud going on with the account and that seeing as i sent in my documents they should consider removing the hold because the tax return was in my name. I even asked to have the funds transferred onto my own Accountnow card and was rudely told no we cannot do that and we don't have to give you your money.
It has been 5 days and the money is still sitting there and the company has not released the restriction and continues to state that i had not submitted enough documentation to prove my identity. I had faxed the stuff over 15 times and still nothing. They claim they never received it.
There are over 100 complaints of this company doing this to to people with their tax refunds but only large amounts are frozen. This company is a scam. They still have not resolved this and i have yet to see anymore of my money. Yesterday I filed a complaint with the IRS and the BBB. I will continue this fight all the way to the federal reserve if my money is not released within the next 5 days. I'm fed up with this company and they need to be stopped.
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