January 20 is the first day each year the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) accepts tax returns. While I never enjoy filing my tax returns, on the years when I receive a refund, I certainly enjoy getting those checks in the mail! Now, with Walmart's new one-of-a-kind Direct2Cash service, I can get my whole tax refund, as fast as possible, fee-free and in cash! Read on to learn exactly how Direct2Cash works.
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Choosing Direct2Cash: What you need to know
Walmart has partnered with Tax Products Group (TPG) to offer the Direct2Cash program to Walmart customers.
When you file your taxes through a tax preparer that uses the Walmart Direct2Cash software (there are more than 25,000 providers using the software nationwide), you can have your refund sent directly to your local Walmart store, where you can pick it up in cash. You don't even need to have a bank account!
With this program, Walmart hopes to save their customers millions of dollars in check-cashing fees, which can range upwards of $70 per refund check. Tax preparers using the Walmart Direct2Cash software may offer the cash refund service to their customers at no fee or for a $7 fee payable upon filing—what they choose to do is their option. So be sure to ask if there’s a fee for using Direct2Cash before you choose a tax preparer!
However, there’s never a cost to you to pick up your refund in cash at your local Walmart store.
What customers and preparers say about Direct2Cash
Thus far, Walmart customers say they’re excited about having a cash refund option, which saves both time and funds.
Tax preparers state they’re glad to be able to skip the time-consuming process of applying for a check refund for their customers.
How to collect your Direct2Cash tax refund
The process of collecting your cash refund is very easy.
- When you file with a tax preparer who uses the Direct2Cash software, you’ll be issued a unique code via email on the date your refund is ready for pickup.
- You’ll then take that code to your local Walmart store along with your ID.
- Show your code and ID at Walmart customer service to receive your cash refund (fee-free).
Walmart also offers tax preparation services
In addition to the Direct2Cash refund pickup service, Walmart also offers tax preparation services in 3,000 stores through Jackson Hewitt.
If you opt to use Jackson Hewitt to prepare your taxes, you may receive a $50 Walmart eGift card plus additional free consultation on health care eligibility and options under the Affordable Care Act (as a complement to Walmart's own Healthcare Begins Here educational program).
Why it’s time for a program like Direct2Cash
On the whole, the age of the brick-and-mortar bank is on the decline. Replacing it is the "digital era," where necessary banking is done online, and there are increasingly more ways to pay and get paid.
As well, the process of sending refund checks through the mail opens customers up to the risks of mail mishandling, check theft and fraud—risks which grow greater year by year. Instead, by opting to use Direct2Cash to receive your refund, you get your refund immediately in a secure transaction.
But perhaps the best news of all is this: Walmart has future plans to use the Direct2Cash software in additional applications beyond tax refunds. Walmart's goal is to find even more ways to help you keep every penny of the money you earn in your own pocket!