How do I open a bank account without a social security number?

Most banks require the following to open an account:

  • A photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport. Some states issue driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants. If you don’t drive and would like a photo ID, the Department of Motor Vehicles issues Non-Driver Photo Identification cards. Check with your state to find out specific requirements.
  • A valid Social Security Number (SSN) or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) 
  • Proof of where you reside: Banks accept copies of utility and cable bills, and signed rental agreements
  • A cash deposit

How to Apply for an ITIN:

An ITIN is a 9-digit tax processing number the IRS uses to record tax payments and process federal tax returns. An ITIN is used mainly by people who don’t legally qualify for an SSN. To get an ITIN you must complete a designated IRS form, submit required documents to verify your identity, and submit the application. Once you receive your ITIN, you can use the ID number to open a bank account. The bank will also verify your name, date of birth (bring a copy of your birth certificate), and your current address. 

Important Note: Depending on the bank, instead of a SSN or ITIN, they may accept a passport number, government-issued ID numbers (such as municipal and/or community identification cards) or an Alien ID card.

The following mainstream banks may require proof of where you live and a valid ITIN:

  • Alliant Credit Union: Extra documentation may be required (e.g., a passport)
  • Bank of America: You can open an account with an ITIN, but it’s not required
  • Charles Schwab
  • Chase: You need an ITIN and a photo ID
  • Citibank: No SSN or ITIN required, you will need to verify your address
  • HSBC
  • PNC: No SSN or ITIN required
  • Wells Fargo: No SSN required

For updates on an already submitted application, please log in to your dashboard using the same log in method you used when you applied, such as your phone number or email.

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