As a member of Scott County Telephone Cooperative, you’re also an owner.  We are a not-for-profit entity. We don’t answer to shareholders – we answer to you, our members.  When you make a payment to SCTC, a portion of that money goes toward strengthening the network that provides you service.  Those funds are called capital credits, and they are used to invest in capital additions and improvements to ensure system reliability and meet the growth demand SCTC is experiencing.  This reduces the need for interest-bearing loans, which helps to keep costs down.  A record of your investment, or capital credit account, is established in your name when you become a member of our cooperative.

Each year, any funds remaining after expenses have been paid (margins) are allocated to your capital credit account.  Capital credits, which are based on the amount of applicable services you have purchased over the year, vary from member to member and year to year.  The SCTC Board of Directors, after assessing the financial condition of the co-op, determines what portion, if any, of margins can be returned or distributed to members.

This process helps keep the cooperative financially stable, while offering members the benefit of a distribution whenever possible.  When we have a good financial year, you benefit.


What are capital credits?
Capital credits are funds you, as a member, invest (through your monthly bill payment) in the cooperative for capital improvements to ensure network reliability and to meet the growth demands.  Capital credits are based on the amount of applicable services you purchase, and vary from member to member and year to year.
What is a capital credit allocation?

A capital credit allocation is simply a record of your investment/ownership in the cooperative.  Each year, any funds remaining after expenses have been paid (margins) are allocated to your capital credit account proportionally to the amount of applicable services purchased.

What is a distribution?

Distribution is the payout of capital credits to members.  The SCTC Board of Directors determine what portion of margins can be returned or distributed to members.  Anyone who was a member in the year or years being returned may receive a capital credit distribution.

What is a discounted distribution?

A discounted distribution are capital credits paid to former cooperative members’ heirs at a discounted value prior to the targeted 25-year rotation.

What does SCTC do with capital credits when they are not distributed?

Telephone utilities are capital intensive businesses requiring large investments in equipment.  SCTC, like all businesses, must maintain a balance between debt and equity to ensure financial stability.  Capital credits are a significant source of equity and help fund growth and maintenance of our network.  By reinvesting your capital credits into the network, SCTC can keep rates competitive by reducing the amount of money it must borrow from banks.

How do I receive my distribution if I’m a former member and don’t receive a bill?

Your capital credits remain on our books in your name until they are retired.  Because capital credit retirements (your cash back payments) are made a number of years after the credits are earned and allocated to your account, members should always keep the cooperative informed of your current mailing address.

Estate Refunds

If a member passes away, the administrator of their estate must notify the cooperative in order to claim the remaining capital credit balance at a discounted distribution rate.

The administrator of the estate of a deceased Scott County Telephone account holder may receive the estate payment for a capital credit refund by doing ALL of the following:

  1. Providing a copy of the death certificate of the deceased member
  2. Submitting Scott County Telephone Cooperative’s CAPITAL CREDITS CLAIM FORM.
  3. Valid Driver’s License-OR-
    Original documentation designating as Court Appointed Representative of the Estate (from court)

Payments to estates are made for funds up through the year of the death of the member.

All deceased members’ remaining capital credits can be paid out at a discounted rate after receiving the approval of the Scott County Telephone Cooperative Board of Directors.


Estate payments are mailed after the approval of the Scott County Telephone Cooperative Board of Directors.

Capital Credits Claim Form must be notarized.

No interest is earned on capital credits.

If you are an active member of Scott County Telephone Cooperative, your distribution will be applied to your bill.

Capital credits that are claimed early due to the death of the SCTC member are returned to the family member at a discounted rate.

Unclaimed capital credits go back to the cooperative to be distributed to the active members’ accounts.

Capital credits are the return of money paid for services in a previous year and are generally not taxable income for residential customers, unless the bills paid were deducted for tax purposes.  Businesses may be subject to different IRS guidelines.  Members should consult with a tax professional for questions related to income tax filings.  SCTC does not provide legal, tax or accounting advice and this information is provided as a courtesy only.


Unfortunately, we can’t always find everyone who has earned a capital credit.

Enter the first three letters of your last name in the search box below to search for any un-cashed – a.k.a. unclaimed-capital credit checks.  If you find your name listed, please send an email to and include the name of the SCTC member.

Please provide the following:

  1. Your previous service address(es)
  2. The approximate dates you were at the previous address(es)
  3. The last four of your social security number
  4. Your current mailing address
    A copy of your driver’s license will need to be provided prior to our mailing your
    Main office: 149 Woodland St., Gate City, VA 24251
    By mail: SCTC, P.O. Box 487, Gate City, VA 24251

    Please make sure to include the member name with any inquiry.

Unclaimed capital credits search