Those wishing to open an offshore account often face problems even before signing the agreement: a foreign bank is able to refuse to open an account at any time without giving a reason. This applies to both personal foreign accounts and corporate bank accounts.
Opening a corporate or personal account is easier with the help of a professional.
Control allows for avoiding money laundering or terrorist financing. But it also complicates the work of banks, companies, and owners of personal bank deposits.
Any inaccuracy in the documents provided when opening a bank account (personal or corporate), or incomplete information about a non-resident client (future owner can be a company or person, doesn’t matter) will most likely lead to a refusal.
Previously, the client used to choose the bank to his liking. Today, the bank selects clients according to its needs. Foreign banks use prequalification lists to help screen potential customers.
Information from the lists is not publicly available, but we are aware of these requirements of banks. Therefore, we can help you open an account even if other banks turned you away.
The difference between an offshore account and a foreign account
A foreign bank account is a deposit in a bank located outside the state of which the person or company is a resident: for example, in Germany, Latvia, the USA, the UK.
An offshore account is a deposit in a bank in an offshore (low-tax) jurisdiction. For example, in the Cayman Islands, Nevis, Dominica, Belize.
Today, more than 100 countries (onshore, midshore, offshore) have joined the automatic exchange of banking information. Data on deposits are transferred annually to the tax office of the country where the account holder lives/is a resident.
What are the types of foreign accounts and offshore accounts?
They can be:
- personal – the owner is a specific person,
- corporate – owners are companies, partnerships, trusts, foundations,
- settlement – for daily payments of companies and individuals,
- accumulative – deposits, deposits of companies and individuals,
- investment – deposits for the purchase of shares, bonds, gold, cryptocurrencies, assets of companies and individuals etc.;
- currency – each account serves one currency: dollars, euros, pounds,
- multicurrency – two or more currencies.
Open a foreign account outside the bank
In addition to banks abroad, you can open corporate and personal accounts in payment systems – financial companies offering banking services. It is possible to open it in the payment system in 1-10 days. Selecting a corporate / personal account with professionals is also useful because there are hundreds of payment services, each with its own nuances.
Payment systems work with owners of companies and individuals. The modern payment system offers current accounts, merchant accounts, individual IBAN, money transfer services, and currency conversion.
In addition to payment systems, there are financial companies, managers, brokers – they also offer to open a foreign account. Most often we are talking about asset management: investments, deposits.
How much does it cost to buy an offshore account?
The cost of a foreign offshore account depends on:
Bank fees for opening (foreign owners pay more than local residents);
Type: personal, corporate, investment;
Minimum deposit (required by some banks);
Commissions of a professional who helps to choose a bank account, prepare documents, open it (foreign companies pay more).
There will be expenses for processing and translation of documents, sending by courier.
Why does the bank require proof of the legality of the origin of funds?
Money laundering is an extremely dangerous charge for a bank and its license. Any client is a potential source of risk. A person/company will be studied under a microscope: they will check the origin of money, reputation, financial history. Sent documents, closed databases and public information are studied through news, social networks, search engines.
It is possible to prove the legality of the origin of funds to the bank where you open a foreign (personal / corporate) account with the following documents:
For individuals: tax return, real estate purchase and sale agreement, document confirming the payment of dividends, personal bank account statement;
Corporate clients: accounting statements for operating business, income documents of company owners.
Offshore account online or only with a personal visit?
Choosing to open an account with professionals allows you to decide: open an account in a foreign bank with a personal visit or remotely (online).
How to open an offshore account without a visit?
Prepare documents (more carefully than during a personal visit);
Send them to us for verification.
List of documents
Standard set includes:
- Certified copy of the passport;
- Proof of residential address (utility bill);
- Proof of the legality of the origin of funds (tax declaration, real estate purchase and sale agreement, document confirming the payment of dividends, personal bank account statement);
- Personal documents of the owner / beneficiary / director / signatory (copy of passport, proof of residential address);
- Corporate documents (charter, memorandum, Good Standing certificate);
- Financial statements;
- The structure of the company.
How long does it take to open a foreign account?
Opening dates depend on:
- Client speed – the faster you provide documents, the better;
- Procedures within the bank;
On average, an account is opened in 14 days. The more complex the ownership structure and the riskier the business, the longer it takes to check before opening a foreign account.
We divide the procedure into 2 stages:
- Providing documents according to our requirements
personal documents of owners and directors,
corporate documents of a company planning to open a corporate account
- Checking the documents by our legal team and positive or negative decision regarding account opening.
Apply for account opening now, and we will start the KYC process immediately! firstname.lastname@example.org