Сould I open account with a foreign bank?

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Сlients are becoming more and more  interested in opening an individual accounts with foreign banks. Someone could tell it can be done quite simply, while others claim that this process is very complicated. Both will be right.

The fact is that each of the clients choose a bank in their own way. Someone knows from the beginning what financial organization he/she needs, while others need more time to decide, because they want quick, convenient procedure, and the reliable bank. The bank can open an account in different ways – remotely or upon personal visit of the client.

In most cases, the client asks for assistance with account opening from a company that represents the client’s interests, or tries to do everything on his/her own that might lead to many mistakes, which then have to be corrected. In the first case, no special efforts are required from the client and as a result, he/she does not have any difficulties. In the second case, the procedure becomes really complicated and long.

Why do you need a foreign bank account?

If you have an account in a foreign bank, it will give you the opportunity to purchase real estate in this country, to receive salary and dividends, to pay for foreing  accommodation during the trip, etc. However, usually, the purpose of obtaining a foreign account is much simpler – to save and increase client’s own capital.

Before opening an account in a foreign bank, you should determine the purpose. A representative of a financial organization will definitely ask about it.

If a person lives and works in another country and needs a bank account there only to receive a salary, then there may not be any additional questions. If a person has other plans, he will have to answer various related questions:

  • why do you need the account?
  • where will the funds come from?
  • what are the sources of income?
  • for what purposes will the funds be used?
  • what is the relation of a person to a country where the desired bank located?

In addition, it will be necessary to provide a package of documents (tax declaration, documents confirming that the person is the owner of the company, contract for the sale of real estate and other property, etc.).

What jurisdiction to choose?

Banks opening accounts for non-residents are divided into four types:

  • European – reliable, prestigious, but quite demanding, in particular regarding the identification of the person and the origin of funds;
  • The CIS and Turkey are more loyal, have more acceptable tariffs, but require relation to respective country;
  • USA and Asia – respectable, stable, confidentiality is at a high level. The main focus is to save money and develop business;
  • offshore – undemanding, low-tax or tax-free.

What bank to choose?

The choice depends on the goal and desire of the client, in particular, on the primary reason for which the account is needed, e.g.: 

  • to receive a salary, choose the banks of the employer’s country;
  • for investment (suitable for wealthy people), it is better to give preference to the banks of Luxembourg, Liechtenstein and Switzerland;
  • banks of Macedonia, Cyprus, Poland Georgia, will be suitable for operational activities;
  • you can take into account the official prestige and reliability ratings of financial organizations;
  • if you have evidence of the sources of origin of funds, it is possible to look banks in Macedonia, Cyprus, Poland;

There are many options for opening an account in a foreign bank by an individual. And not only for a businessman, but also for an investor and for an ordinary person.

Also, it is necessary to study bank’s requirements and conditions:

  • minimum deposit amount;
  • the cost of opening and maintaining of an account;
  • the possibility of remote account opening (in some financial institutions, the personal presence of the client is a mandatory condition);
  • interest rate on the deposit;
  • the term of a bank account opening;
  • compliance requirements;
  • whether it is needed to confirm the connection with the selected country (relocation, business, work);
  • level of confidentiality;
  • availability of Russian-speaking employees in the bank, etc.

All above points are important, so you need to consider them well. If you don’t want to go through all these subtleties, you can give the process  to the specialists.

What types of personal accounts exist?

Based on the purpose of bank account, they could be classified as follows: 

  • current (for all financial transactions);
  • card (for payment, only with a plastic card to make it more convenient for the use);
  • savings (for saving capital and its accumulation);
  • investment (for wealth management via investments in bonds, shares, precious metals, investment funds, etc.).

Not all foreign banks offer the opening of current bank accounts for transactions on a daily basis. Two types of accounts are more common – investment and savings accounts.

Opening an account in a foreign bank with assistance of Intellium Law

The specialists of our company know the specifics of banks worldwide and the list of conditions and requirements in most institutions. Our most professional tax consultants and lawyers will be happy to assist you during the process.

The process of account opening will go in the following way: 

  • first we analyze your requirements to the bank and purposes of account opening;
  • then we are looking for the bank that will meet your requirements within more than sixty countries;
  • further, we provide assistance with account opening in the bank of your choice, i.e. gathering and preparing necessary documents, communicating with bank specialists and compliance. etc. You will have support at all stages.

Our company works closely with banks of Slovakia, Serbia, Georgia, Switzerland, Hungary, Armenia, Portugal, Macedonia, Austria, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Bulgaria, Hong Kong, payment systems of Latvia, Lithuania, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Singapore and Spain.

Our lawyers will do our best to reach the required target. Working with us, you will easily achieve your goal.


You can open an account in a foreign bank yourself, but it is usually a very complicated process. Many people have difficulties already at the initial stage, when it is necessary to analyze the banks in different jurisdictions. The difficulties might appear later, at the stage of documents preparation and passing bank compliance. So, it is better to use professional assistance to achieve the desired results.

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