USAA Community w9 request.jpg

Community users have been posting about a request to update their W-9 forms and we wanted to provide some additional information.


What is a Tax Certification (W-9 form)?

A Tax Certification (W-9 form) is a form that certifies member’s tax payer information (name and social security number). For more information on W-9 form, visit website.


Why am I being asked to update my W-9?

To ensure our members’ tax reporting information is up to date, accurate and reported correctly to the IRS, USAA may ask members to update their W-9 forms. We want to make sure we have the most accurate tax information on file. To assist with completing the W-9, we have created a digital option which allows for the document to be easily and quickly completed online.  If your account is eligible for the digital option, you should be prompted when reviewing your transactions on


Where can I update my information?

When reviewing your transactions on you should receive a “digital detour” that will prompt you to sign the required form. This is also available on mobile. If you do not see the prompt on mobile, make sure to update your device with the latest version of the USAA mobile app.


What if I do not see the prompt?

Not all members are being asked to update their W9. Those members will not see the “digital detour”.

Or, your account is not eligible for digital detour. If your account is not eligible for digital detour, you will receive a W-9 form in the mail. If you prefer the W-9 form mailed to you, please call us at 800-531-USAA (8722).


Do you have any other questions we can help answer regarding the W-9 update request?


Much like the many USAA customers have stated, USAA did not implement this very well.  After loyal customers have banked for several years, if not decades, why is this information needed?  Why must there be a threatening note that states there would be a withhold on our account/s?


USAA, there was little, if any, explanation to why we needed to do this.  There was no information unless we, the customer, searched to verify that this was not a scam or malware embedded into our accounts.


Personally, USAA you are getting too big as a company and the perception is we will obey or else.  The or else is inching customers, like myself, to research other banking institutions who still favor the military personnel rather than take advantage and cash in on us.


USAA, there are many voices.  Please do not take our comments lightly by replying that your comments are forwarded.  Instead, act on this.  Act to explain why you did this.  Act to carefully screen over any potential notice before sending it.  When the customer fills out the information, act and accept.  Do not continue to send more threatening e-mails, like I received today.


USAA, show us that you truly care about the customers and we are not simple numbers for your profitable gain.

Occasional Visitor

So I just received the email to update my W9 as well.... I logged onto the site and was not prompted to sign I'm thikning this is a scam... the email aslo doesn't state how to get to the W9 form if it doesn't pop up either.... what's going on with USAA???

USAA Service
USAA Service

@RICJ1, I understand this can cause some concern for you. Please contact us at 210-531-8722 and we will be more than happy to review this with you. ~ Sam 


"If your account is not eligible for digital detour, you will receive a W-9 form in the mail."  Because I love sending my SSN through the mail (heavy sarcasm)


I think back to the commercials with a solid looking 'Sgt Baker' who lauds praise on USAA for their services and notes that they even say, "Hello Sgt Baker" on the phone - which no one does anymore.  I used to be quite smug about being a USAA member, but that's fading after 17 years.  However, I wouldn't want to be a Wells Fargo customer so at least we all have that going for us.

USAA Service
USAA Service

@JLK13, Thank you for the feedback and sorry for your frustration. This isn't how we want you to feel.  I am forwarding your feedback now about the W9. ~Tom

New Member

This W-9 requirement is completely unnecessary for my situation and the email and pop up are more forceful and threatening than they need to be. Internet research reveals that the W-9 is an optional (mostly) form for internal use and commonly used for independent contractors (it is only required when amounts being paid are in excess of $600 or on retail sales above $5000 neither of which apply to me). USAA has my up to date information (I checked) and has been reporting my information to the IRS for 30+ years with no issues.  I could understand the need to update or confirm if I had requested some type of change, however, to suddenly require this form to be updated and signed in the current circumstance is bogus. I also object to the manpower and programming costs associated with this attempt to force people into complying with this nonsense. If this document is not signed 28% of any interest or dividends being paid may be withheld as taxes rather than an amount based on individual withholding. I am willing to risk it on my $.70 (70 cents) per year in interest on my checking account or on any other account that may be applicable.

New Member

This w9 notice process is not exained properly and appears threatening. The type of experience you expect from a bank that has grown too big to understand the perception of account holders.

USAA Service
USAA Service

Oh no @JPB1976, that is certainly not how we want our members to feel. I was able to locate your profile and will share your concerns with the appropriate area. Once reviewed they will contact you. We appreciate your patience in advance. -Emily 


I also thought this was a phishing scam and wondered why they suddenly needed to have this information from me, even though they've already had it on file for decades. There has simply not been a good explanation for this and even though the notice/warning actually does appear to be from USAA, why are all these customer service responses still so vague and offering no follow-up posts? I keep seeing USAA post "We'll get back to you" messages and then no further updates for people who are reading this thread and wondering what is going on. We are all asking for a better explanation as to why we're receiving this request that appears to be quite random (and threatening), and so far, there hasn't really been a proper explanation. 

USAA Service
USAA Service

@StillNotFixed, thanks for your post, we can understand your concern.  What is comes down to is we want to make sure we have the most accurate tax information on file.  Additionally, we do not always respond in a public forum when there is anything that could be a security risk to our members.  Hope this helps.