It’s Easier Than Ever to Bank in the US without Living There: Here’s the Why and How
If you’re a non-US citizen considering opening a bank account in the US, Gregory Finkelson of American Corporate Services shares his guidance on the hows and whys of this process.
Why Do I Need a US Bank Account?
There are a few different reasons you might want to open a US bank account as a non-citizen, depending on your own personal circumstances. These may include:
- Preparation for a move to the United States: having an account with funds already deposited in the country can help to make your immigration process easier – this is required for such visas as L-1, E-2, EB-5, EB-1C, and some others.
- Business activities in the US: most banks in the US will require that your business is based in the US in order to open an account for you.
- Reduce costs of transacting: having a bank in the US will help you to avoid exorbitant bank and card fees when you spend and/or receive money in the country.
- Transactions are insured: even non-residents can have bank transactions up to $250,000 insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Which Banks Can I Choose From?
Gregory Finkelson lists the following banks among those that non-US residents can easily open accounts with:
- City National Bank
- Bank of America
- Pacific Western Bank
- Wells Fargo Bank
- Preferred Bank
- Chase Bank
How Do I Open a US Bank Account as a Non-Citizen?
It is highly recommended that you use a service based in the US to arrange your bank account on your behalf. This not only speeds up the process, Gregory Finkelson explains, but you’re assured that no red tape will stand in the way of the account being opened.
Using a service such as American Corporate Services to open your US bank account means you have the following two options:
- ACS will help you to prepare all necessary documents, will arrange the appointment with the bank, and ACS’s employee will be present during the meeting with the banker.
- You don’t have to do all of the legwork yourself. You simply send through the required documents and they will do the rest.
What Services Can I Expect to Have Access to?
As a non-US citizen banking in the US, you can expect to have access to:
- Global wire transfers
- Online banking
- Debit cards (Visa or MasterCard)
- U.S. bill payments
What Forms of ID are Accepted?
The service you elect to choose will advise you on the type of ID you can use to open an account. In general, depending on your location, most banks will accept one of the following forms of primary and secondary identification:
- Foreign passport
- U.S. non-immigrant border crossing card and visa
- Citizenship certificate card
- Consular ID
- Foreign driver’s license
- Voter registration card
Get Banking Freedom Today
Banking in the US is not as difficult as it may seem for non-citizens, says Gregory Finkelson. By making use of a reputable service and providing the required documentation timeously, your US bank account could be open sooner than you think.