VA Tax News

  • 14 Jan 2013 4:36 PM | Anonymous

    The 2012-2014 Appropriations Act Item (273 of HB 1301 - Acts of Assembly 2012 Special Session I, Chapter 3) requires all corporations to file their estimated tax payments, annual income tax returns and final payments electronically beginning January 1, 2013.  This includes Taxable Year 2012 returns, tax due payments, extension payments and Taxable Year 2013 estimated payments.  

    • The annual corporate income tax return must be filed through the Federal/State e-File program, which is supported by numerous commercial software applications. For a list of approved commercial e-File software and more information, visit the Department's Corporate Income Tax page.
    • Tax due payments can be made through the e-File system as a direct debit or by an ACH Credit transaction initiated through the corporation's bank.
    • The Department provides two secure online options for electronically submitting estimated and extension payments, e-Forms and Business iFile. For more information and to determine the method that works best for you visit "Estimated and Extension Payments" on the Corporate Income Tax page of the Department's website.  Estimated tax payments and extension payments can also be submitted by an ACH Credit. 

    Corporations unable to file and pay electronically by the effective date may request a waiver.

  • 14 Jan 2013 4:35 PM | Anonymous

    Corporate returns for the taxable year ending September 30, 2012, must be filed on or before January 15, 2013

    Even though Virginia law provides for an automatic six-month extension, it is an extension to file, not an extension to pay.  At least 90 percent of the total tax liability for the taxable year must be paid on or before the due date of the return.  Visit the Corporate Income Tax page of the Department's website for more information.


    Corporate returns for the taxable year ending March 31, 2012 for which an extension of time to file was taken must also be filed on or before January 15, 2013.  

  • 08 Nov 2012 11:49 AM | Anonymous

    The Virginia Department of Taxation would like to clarify how Tax Preparers should submit the Corporate Income Tax Electronic Filing Waiver Request on behalf of their clients.     

    • Complete a single Corporate Income Tax Electronic Filing Waiver Request Form.
    • Attach a list of the Corporations for which you prepare tax returns and/or submit payments and include the following information for each corporation.
      • Corporation Name
      • Corporation FEIN
      • Indicate whether you have a Power of Attorney for each client
    • Fax the Waiver Request and list to 804-367-3015
    • The Department will issue a single waiver to the tax preparer covering all their clients.

    Listed below are some valid reasons for which a Tax Professional would request a waiver.

    • The Tax Preparer’s software does not support electronic filing
    • The cost to purchase software supporting e-File would be a cost burden on the firm.    
    • The fact that the IRS does not support a specific federal form or schedule through their e-File program is not a valid reason for a waiver on its own merit.  Since Virginia’s e-File program supports PDF attachments, the federal return or form can be attached as a PDF and filed as an “unlinked” return to Virginia.  Please check with your software company as to whether they support both linked and unlinked returns.  
      • If you do not have a scanner or other means to produce a PDF, then request a waiver.
      • If your software does not support unlinked filing of returns to the state, then request a waiver.

    If you have any questions, please direct them to Nancy Wilson at

  • 08 Nov 2012 11:48 AM | Anonymous

    The Virginia Department of Taxation is implementing a significant change in the way individual income tax refunds are issued, and we need your help to prepare your clients for choosing the best option for their 2012 refunds.

    As required by the 2012-2014 Appropriations Act, there will be two options on 2012 returns for receiving individual income tax refunds - direct deposit or debit card.  Both paper and software versions of the individual income tax returns will require that one of these two options be selected.  Requesting a paper check in preference to direct deposit or a debit card will not be an option. 

    To ensure the smoothest possible transition from the use of paper checks, we ask your help with two critical areas.  First, ensure that you obtain accurate dates of birth, addresses, and telephone numbers from each of your clients, as well as complete and correct bank account information for those who wish to use direct deposit.  Second, educate your clients about the refund options on the return.  If your clients routinely drop off their information for return preparation without a face-to-face consultation, you may want to notify them of the changes to required information in advance. We hope the following information will be helpful to share with your clients.

    Why was the law changed?  The Department of Taxation issues over a million income tax refund checks each year.  The switch to debit cards will save the Commonwealth of Virginia money by reducing check printing and mailing costs.  The Department of Treasury has partnered with Xerox State and Local Solutions, Inc. to administer the tax refund debit card program at no cost to the Commonwealth. Issuing debit cards to individuals who do not choose direct deposit on their 2012 returns will reduce the Treasury’s annual costs by $200,000.

    What are the benefits of each option for Virginia taxpayers?  Direct deposit is still the fastest method for receiving a refund, provided accurate bank account information is entered on the return, so be sure to check your bank information carefully before filing your return.  For individuals who prefer not to use direct deposit, the refund debit card offers a more secure and convenient alternative to paper checks that also lets the recipient avoid check-cashing fees.

    Is the Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card secure?  The Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card is the equivalent of a bank account with a MasterCard® bank, and is protected by federal and state banking laws.  The card itself can be activated only by using the recipient’s identifying information, including social security number and date of birth.  Once activated, the card can be used only with a personal identification number (PIN) chosen by the recipient.

    How can the debit card be used?  The card can be cashed at any MasterCard® bank, or it can be used like a regular debit card at retail stores and ATMs, or to make transactions online.  Unlike some types of debit cards, the Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card is valid only until the refund amount has been exhausted. The card cannot be reloaded.

    Are there fees associated with using the debit card?  Many transactions are free, such as a one-time withdrawal of funds or cash back with a purchase, but there are fees for some other transactions.  A fee schedule is available on our website. 

    How will debit cards work for a joint refund?  In the case of a joint return, a debit card will be issued to each spouse to enable both spouses to access their joint refund.  The refund itself cannot be divided between the spouses.  Instead, the couple will access their funds as they mutually agree, just as they would have done with a paper check.

    We have attached two flyers (Refund Options Flyer and Debit Card Overview) that you may find helpful to distribute within your organization, as well as to any members or clients that you serve.  One provides a basic overview of the refund options, and the other addresses the changes in more detail, including frequently asked questions about the Virginia Tax Refund Debit Card.

    Please share this information with your clients to help them understand their refund options for 2012, and make them aware of the change from paper checks to debit cards.  We will continue to add information to our website, including Frequently Asked Questions, links to the Xerox website and other helpful resources.  If you have questions in the meantime, feel free to call our Tax Professionals Hotline at (804) 367-9286.

  • 02 Mar 2012 3:38 PM | Anonymous

    These issues reflect some of the more common problems we encounter with corporate income tax returns.

    • If your corporate name has changed from the previous year when you filed the return, please check the “Name Change” box on the return. You should notify the Department of Taxation of any name change, in addition to the Virginia Corporation Commission.
    • If your physical address or mailing address is different from the previous year when you filed their last return, please check the applicable “Address Change” box.
    • Please be sure to verify that the nine-digit Federal Identification Number (FEIN) was entered correctly on the return and it is the correct number assigned to your corporation.
    • If you are claiming a subtraction, deduction or a credit, please be sure to attach the supporting documentation.  This documentation could be a Schedule ADJ or Schedule CR.  Also provide supporting documentation such as tax-credit certificates and statements.
    • If estimated payments or extension payments are being claimed on the return, please verify the amount of estimated or extension payments made during the year before filing the return.
    • If you are claiming a subtraction, deduction, or contribution, please enter the valid codes on the Schedule ADJ.
    • When submitting a paper tax return to the Virginia Department of Taxation, please ensure the front page and the back page are both sent (even if there are no entries on the back page).  Keep in mind, Virginia now accepts Corporation Income Tax returns through our e-File program.  For more information, see our Corporate Income Tax e-File page
    • When submitting a corporation tax return, please use the correct form for the year the return is being submitted.   
    • Please be sure to use the proper return based on your company’s entity type.  Corporations should be fling form 500 whereas a pass-through-entity should be filing form 502. All forms can be located on our website.
    • If the corporation return that you are submitting is a “final return” please do not request an overpayment credit.  Just request a refund.

    Please ensure you have registered with the Department of Taxation prior to submitting your corporation tax return.  You may register the business online using our iReg system.  Notifying the Virginia Corporation Commission does not automatically register you with the Department of Taxation.
  • 02 Mar 2012 3:35 PM | Anonymous

    As a general rule, pass-through entities are required to withhold tax on the Virginia taxable income they pass through to their nonresident owners.  The Department of Taxation offers the following tips for reporting the tax on Form 502:

    • Keep in mind that the tax payment for 2011 is due on April 16, 2012, even if the entity takes advantage of the automatic six-month filing extension for its Form 502.

    • The tax is reported and reconciled on page 2, Section 1, of Form 502.

    • On line 1, enter the total tax actually withheld for nonresident owners.  Do not include tax amounts that would have been withheld for owners who are exempt from the withholding requirement, or personal estimated tax payments made by the owners themselves.

    • Line 2 must be completed if the Form 502 is being filed after April 16.  Use this line to report the tax that was paid prior to filing Form 502.

    • Line 3 will reflect an overpayment if the payment amount on line 2 is greater than the tax liability reported on line 1.  If line 2 is less than line 1, enter the balance of tax due on line 4.

    • If the return is filed after April 16 and the amount of tax due reported on line 4 represents more than 10 percent of the total tax liability reported on line 1, the entity may be subject to a penalty.
    For complete information on the withholding requirements for pass-through entities, see the instructions for Form 502 on our website.
  • 02 Mar 2012 3:33 PM | Anonymous

    What’s New for Tax Credits

    The 2011 General Assembly enacted six new tax credits.  All of these credits, except the Telework Expenses tax credit, are effective for taxable year 2011. Additionally, the Motion Picture Production tax credit, which was enacted by the 2010 General Assembly, is effective for taxable year 2011.  Thus, with the exception of the Telework Expenses Tax Credit, taxpayers may apply for and, if approved, claim these new credits on their 2011 income tax returns.

     The new tax credits administered by the Virginia Department of Taxation (the Department) are as follows:

    • The Barge and Rail Usage tax credit
    • The Farm Wineries and Vineyards tax credit
    • The International Trade Facility tax credit
    • The Research and Development tax credit
    • The Telework Expenses tax credit 

    The other two new credits are the Port Volume Increase Tax Credit and the Motion Picture Production Tax Credit.  The Port Volume Increase tax credit is administered by the Virginia Port Authority.  The Motion Picture Production tax credit is administered by the Virginia Film Office.   

    In addition to the new credits above, there are changes to existing credits:

    • Livable Home
    • Neighborhood Assistance Credit
    • Agricultural Best Management Practices

    For more information on Tax Credits, click this link

    Long Term Capital Gain Subtraction

    Effective for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2011, any income taxed as a long-term capital gain for federal income tax purposes, or any income taxed as investment services partnership income (otherwise known as investment partnership carried interest income) for federal tax purposes is allowed as a subtraction on the Virginia return. This subtraction is allowed if the income is attributable to an investment in a “qualified business” as defined in Va. Code § 58.1-339.4 or in any other technology business approved by the Secretary of Technology and the business has its principal office or facility in the Commonwealth and less than $3 million in annual revenues for the fiscal year preceding the investment. The investment must be made between the dates of April 1, 2010, and June 30, 2013.  

    Filing Thresholds

    Beginning in tax year 2010, the filing thresholds will increase as follows:

         Filing Status

    2010 & 2011

    2012 & Beyond

     Single or Married, filing separately



     Married, filing jointly



    Claiming Credit for Taxes Paid to Another State

    Were you required to pay income tax to a state other than Virginia for the 2011 tax year?  If so, the Virginia Department of Taxation has some reminders on claiming credit for taxes paid to another state on your 2011 Virginia income tax return.

    • The credit computation is based on the qualifying taxable income and the qualifying tax liability reported to the other state.  Where no tax is paid to the other state, a taxpayer is ineligible to claim an out-of-state credit on their Virginia return.
    • Taxpayers receiving full refunds of tax withheld under Virginia’s reciprocal agreements with Maryland, the District of Columbia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania or West Virginia, may not claim a credit for the amount withheld. In addition, a credit may not be claimed for taxes paid to any other state solely on the basis of a Form W-2 showing income tax withheld.
    • The total allowable credit for taxes paid to another state or states is limited to the net tax liability on your Virginia return (for residents, Form 760, line 17). 
    • If you are entitled to claim credit for taxes paid to more than one other state, you must provide a separate computation for each state.  In addition, you must provide a complete copy of the return for each state for which a credit is claimed.  Failure to provide required documentation may result in disallowance of the credit.
    • Part-year residents filing form 760PY may not claim a credit for taxes paid to another state on income they received during their period of residence outside Virginia.
    • Generally, Virginia residents may not claim a credit for taxes paid to Arizona, California, Oregon, or the District of Columbia.  Nonresidents filing Virginia Form 763 may only claim credit for taxes paid to those states.

    For more details on this topic, visit the Credit for Tax Paid to Other States page of our website, or check the forms and instructions for filing Virginia returns.  Forms and instructions are located online at our Individual Tax Forms page.

    Retirees – Pensions and Estimated Payments

    Did you retire during the 2011 or 2012 tax years?  If so, please be advised that Virginia does tax pensions and most other retirement income.

    Retirement income types taxed by Virginia may be different from other states.  For example, some states do not tax military pension income, but Virginia will.  Also, Virginia will not tax Social Security income, regardless of whether another state does.  As a general rule, taxpayers should presume any type of income included in their Federal Adjusted Gross Income is taxable unless Virginia instructions specifically state it should be subtracted from tax consideration.

    Virginia applies the same tax rates to all types of income.  If you have recently retired or anticipate retiring soon, Virginia recommends you check to ensure that enough Virginia income tax is withheld from your retirement income.  If no tax is withheld on income Virginia deems taxable, you may need to make estimated tax payments to cover the tax owed.

    For more information on estimating Virginia taxes and making payments of estimated tax, see our Estimated Payment Information page.  To review a more complete list of income Virginia does not tax, review the instructions on Subtractions from Income for your specific form type. Individual tax forms and instructions are available at our Individual Forms page online.

    Military Spouses Residency Relief Act

    The Military Spouses Residency Relief Act (S.475), which amended the Servicemember Civil Relief Act, was signed into law on Nov. 11, 2009. (You can find the Tax Bulletin that the Department published on the subject here.) It affects Virginia income tax filing requirements for spouses of military service members.  Under this law, spouses of military service members do not automatically become liable for income and personal property taxes as Virginia residents when they are present in Virginia solely because their spouse is a member of the military serving in Virginia.  To be exempt, however, the spouse must meet certain criteria.  For details, visit our website.
  • 22 Dec 2011 10:36 AM | Anonymous

    First quarter 2012 interest rates remain unchanged.

    State and certain local interest rates are subject to change every quarter due to changes in federal rates established pursuant to IRC § 6621. Federal rates for the first quarter of 2012 will be 3% for tax underpayments (assessments) and 3% for tax overpayments (refunds) by taxpayers other than corporations.

    Virginia Code§ 58.1-15 provides that underpayment rates for Virginia taxes will be 2% higher than the corresponding federal rates and overpayment rates for Virginia taxes will be 2% higher than the federal rate.  Accordingly, the

    Virginia rates for the first quarter of 2012 will be 5% for tax underpayments (assessments) and 5% for tax overpayments (refunds).

    Tax Bulletin 11-11, with complete information, is attached and may be found in the Tax Policy Library also.

  • 01 Dec 2011 4:47 PM | Anonymous

    Filing Reminders for Corporation Tax Clients

    Corporation income tax returns for the taxable year ended August 31, 2011 are due to be filed by December 15, 2011.  For fastest and easiest filing, use Corporate Income Tax eFile to file your client’s return.

    Remember, even though Virginia law provides for an automatic six-month filing extension, that extension does not apply to tax payments.  To avoid penalties, be sure your clients pay at least 90 percent of their tax liability by December 15, 2011

    A reminder for your corporation tax clients whose taxable year ended February 28, 2011:  the extended filing date is coming up soon!  Return and payment for any tax due must be filed by December 15, 2011

    For complete information on corporation income tax filing and payment requirements, see the instructions for Form 500 on our website

    The final Corporation Estimated Income Tax Payment for calendar year 2011 filers is also due December 15, 2011.  For more information about Corporate Estimated Payments, see TAX’s Corporate Income Tax information.  

    Paying an extension payment or estimated income tax using our free online Business iFile system is the fastest and most efficient way.

    Correct Reporting of VK-1 Amounts Withheld

    Are you a tax preparer who handles Virginia Individual Income tax filings that include information from the form VK-1?  If so, the Virginia Department of Taxation would like to clarify how to report the amount listed as withheld for the owner included on that form.

    Income tax deducted from wage, salary or other payments and paid to the Department of Taxation on behalf of the recipient is referred to as income tax withheld, or withholding tax.  Typical withholding tax documents include Forms W2 or 1099.  VK-1 statements issued by a business that reflect amounts other than zero on line e. “Amount Withheld by PTE for Owner” should be treated in the same manner as W2s/1099s with regard to reporting the amounts of tax withheld.  Copies of VK-1 statement information should also be submitted with any tax return claiming VK-1 withholding.

    The Department of Taxation receives many income tax returns that list VK-1 withholding as estimated tax payments, extension payments, etc.  Returns prepared this way may prompt adjustments to the returns or requests for additional documentation to correct them.  For specific line information, please consult the instructions for your form type or contact our Customer Service office for assistance.

    QuickPay: A Convenient & Free Way to Pay Your Tax Bills

    QuickPay is a free and secure online bill-paying service offered by the Virginia Department of Taxation. All bills issued by the agency may be paid using QuickPay with the exception of those currently under bankruptcy or appeal. 

    Payments may be made by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) for individual or business tax bills using funds from either a checking or savings account. QuickPay also allows your clients to check their bill balance(s) and review QuickPay payment history for up to two years. 

    To use QuickPay, go directly to QuickPay or visit our website.  Once at the QuickPay login, enter the five digit bill number of the bill being paid from the most recent bill statement, along with either the nine-digit SSN for an individual tax bill, or, for a business tax bill, the 15-digit Virginia account number.

    State Office Closings for This Month

    State offices, including the Department of Taxation, will be closed Friday, Dec. 23, and Monday, Dec. 26, in observance of the Christmas holiday.

    If you need to contact the Department, please plan to do so at other times. Normal business hours and contact information can be found here.

    Need More Information?

    For more information on any of the topics in this message, please visit our website at

    The Department of Taxation would like to wish all Virginia tax professionals a very happy holiday season and a wonderful 2012!
  • 11 Nov 2011 10:25 AM | Anonymous

    Filing Reminder for Corporation Income Tax Clients

    Corporation income tax returns for the taxable year ended July 31, 2011 are due to be filed by Nov. 15, 2011.  For fastest and easiest filing, use Corporate Income Tax e-File to file your client's return.

    Remember, even though Virginia law provides for an automatic six-month filing extension, that extension does not apply to tax payments. To avoid penalties, be sure your client pays at least 90 percent of the tax liability by Nov. 15, 2011.  Use our free Business iFile service to make your client's payment online.

    A reminder for your clients whose corporation's taxable year ended Jan. 31, 2011: the extended filing date is coming up soon!  Return and payment for any tax due must be filed by Nov. 15, 2011.   

    For complete information on corporation income tax filing and payment requirements, see the instructions for Form 500 on our website

    Power of Attorney Process Issues F.A.Q.

    Virginia established a new Power of Attorney process last year that allowed Authorized Agents to receive automatic copies of correspondence sent to the taxpayers they represent.  To address confusion on the Power of Attorney process, here is a list of Frequently Asked Questions on Power of Attorney matters and submission of R-7 and PAR 101 forms.

    Q:  Why register as an Authorized Agent?

    A: Anyone who wishes to be automatically copied on correspondence sent to a taxpayer must submit Form R-7 to register as an Authorized Agent with Virginia and Form PAR 101 identifying them as representative for that taxpayer. This includes all types of representatives: attorneys, friends, family members, accountants, etc.

    Q: Who qualifies to register as an Authorized Agent or receive Power of Attorney authorization?

    A:  Any individual can register as Authorized Agents and receive Power of Attorney authorization; businesses cannot.  The Department of Taxation will not accept a Form R-7 or any Power of Attorney documents that list a business as the authorized Power of Attorney.

    Q: Will Virginia accept any alternate Power of Attorney documents?

    A:  A federal Form 2848 specifying Virginia tax matters and specific years or a durable power of attorney document can be accepted only to allow discussion of related account issues. Alternate Power of Attorney documents cannot authorize the Department of Taxation to issue automatic copies of correspondence.  However, representatives authorized through alternate Power of Attorney documents can still obtain copies of taxpayer correspondence within the scope authorized by the Power of Attorney document. These representatives must submit written requests to Customer Service for the specific correspondence they wish to obtain.

    Q:  Is the federal Form 8821 an acceptable Power of Attorney document?

    A:  No, the federal Form 8821 is not an acceptable Virginia Power of Attorney document.  The Department of Taxation will not process these forms to record Power of Attorney authorization.

    Q:  Will it be a problem if I use different information on my R-7 and PAR 101?

    A:  Authorized Agents should use the exact same mailing address, name spelling, and contact information on both the R-7 and the PAR 101.  Differences in information may lead to confusion on the Authorized Agent’s identity and delays in processing PAR 101 forms.

    Q:  What do I do if I need to update my Authorized Agent information?

    A:  All updates to the Authorized Agent profile (mailing address, etc.) should be made on the Form R-7 with the change of information box checked.

    Q:  Can I fill in the PAR 101 with my Federal CAF# instead of an Authorized Agent number?

    A:  No. An Authorized Agent number (AA#) is issued to agents upon processing of their R-7.  This number is unique to VA and is not the same as the Federal CAF# or an Enrollment Card Number.

    Q:  How many Authorized Agents can receive automatic copies of taxpayer correspondence?

    A:  Only two (2) Agents per taxpayer may be named on the PAR 101 to receive automatic copies of correspondence.  Other agents can still be named to act on the taxpayer’s account by attaching a supplemental information list to the PAR 101 form.  These additional Agents will not receive automatic copies of correspondence, but they may obtain copies of correspondence by submitting a written request to Customer Service.

    Q:  Is my Power of Attorney document valid without my signature?

    A:  Without the Agent signature, authorization has not been accepted and TAX will be unable to communicate with said Agent.  Therefore, all Authorized Agents named on the PAR 101 must sign the form under the signature of representative section on line 7.  Agents on a supplemental form of the type outlined in the previous question must sign the supplemental statement.

    Form R-7, Form PAR101, and their accompanying instructions are available online at the Virginia Department of Taxation’s website.

    Taxpayer Bill of Rights

    The Virginia Taxpayer Bill of Rights booklet outlines your rights in contacts with the Virginia Department of Taxation, and contains a wealth of other useful information, forms and instructions.

    Intended as a guide to the rights provided in the Code of Virginia under the Virginia Taxpayer Bill of Rights, the publication also describes the role of the Taxpayer Rights Advocate and the agency’s collections, office audit, and field audit processes in detail, and covers the basics for offers in compromise and administrative appeals as well.  The booklet’s appendices include forms and instructions for submitting an appeal or an offer in compromise, plus forms for designating a Power of Attorney.

    As you will find, the Virginia Taxpayer Bill of Rights booklet is a valuable resource for both taxpayers and tax professionals.  Be sure to bookmark or download a copy for your tax reference library!

    Need More Information?

    For more information on any of the topics in this message, please visit our website at
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