Offshore banking is often associated with a high level of financial sophistication. However, the reality is that the average person can open an offshore bank account with just a few hours of work. From swiss banking you can now have the best deals.
Each offshore bank and foreign jurisdiction has its own requirements, so you will need to do some research to find the details that are relevant to your situation. The following is an overview of what you can expect based on common offshore banking centers such as Switzerland, the Cayman Islands and the Channel Islands.
The basic requirements
The basis for opening an offshore bank account is similar to opening a bank account in your own country. Offshore banks will ask you for your personal information, such as your name, date of birth, address, nationality and profession.
To verify your personal information, you can expect to provide a copy of your passport, driver’s license or other identifying documents issued by a government agency. Banks are also verifying your place of residence or physical address, as this can affect tax matters. This requirement can be met by submitting an energy bill or similar documents.
Due to the wide range of different identification documents that can be presented to offshore banks, extra certainty is often required about the authenticity of a document. A notarial copy of certain documents may be sufficient in some cases. Other offshore centers prefer an apostilles seal, a special type of certification mark that is used internationally. If this is the case, you must visit the government agency authorized to issue this stamp for your country or country.
Additional verification documents
In offshore banking, there are often significant additional requirements for opening the account that you may not be used to. These requirements are designed to discourage money laundering, tax fraud or other illegal activities that are often associated with offshore banking.
First, offshore banks can request financial reference documents from your current bank, stating the average balances and a satisfactory relationship. This is usually met by bank statements from the past six to twelve months.
Secondly, many offshore banks ask about the nature of transactions that are expected to take place via the account. This may seem overly intrusive, but offshore banking centers are under increasing pressure to stop illegal activities. For this purpose, many offshore banks want additional documentation, drawing up where the money you deposit in the bank comes.
If your money comes from a job, a payslip from your employer is probably sufficient. To verify your investment income, an offshore bank may request information about your investments and where they are held.
If you receive substantial amounts from a business or real estate transaction, you may have to provide sales contracts or other relevant documents. If you deposit money from an insurance contract, you may have to submit a letter from your insurance company. If your money comes from inheritance, they can request a letter from the estate administrator to confirm this.
Choose a currency for your offshore bank account
In contrast to domestic accounts, offshore bank accounts offer an option for which currency the account should be held. This can be a very valuable feature of an offshore account, as it offers the possibility to keep money in a different currency if someone’s national currency is unstable or is expected to depreciate. It is important to understand the consequences of holding your account in different currencies.