Setting up a bank account for a new start-up company as a non resident is not a difficult process. The most difficult aspect of this process will be gathering the required documents and setting up the initial meeting—if a personal meeting is required.
There are many reasons why you should set up a bank account for your new start up company. The first reason is that you must maintain a registered agent in Delaware to act on your behalf and keep your company in good standing and this costs your company money. Then you must pay your annual fee each year to the state of Delaware to ensure your company remains in good standing. By opening a U.S. company bank account you can cover all of these fees in a faster and more efficient manner. Bear in mind that you do not need to open a U.S. bank account in the state of Delaware just because your company is formed in Delaware. You can open a bank account in any state so long as you follow the correct procedure.
Procedures for opening a bank account as a non-U.S. resident vary by branch and bank but overall they stick to the same main process (Read our in depth article on banks providing a bank accounts in Delaware). While the process may vary bank by bank (it is best to call or email ahead of time to get a thorough and complete list of requirements) they will all require the following items:
- Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Formation
- Passport of the person opening the account
- Employer Identification Number (EIN)
- Certificate of Good Standing
- Banking Resolution
- Proof of US physical address – signed office lease or the address of the agent acting on your behalf
If you want to open a business bank account it is best that you set up an interview with the bank and ask the following questions:
1. Do I need to come into the bank in person to open the account?
2. Do I need to bring a Certificate of Authority of proof of my qualification for the state where the bank branch is located?
3. Do I need to provide a Delaware address? Will proof of address be required and if so what are acceptable forms of proof?
4. What documents do I need?
With regard to the Certificate of Formation (or Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Organization), you should determine if the bank needs a plain copy or a certified copy. With regard to the Certificate of Good Standing you should ask if they accept email or fax copies. With regard to the Operating Agreement or the Bylaws, ask if the bank requires a notarized copy. Finally, with regard to the resolution naming the members or owners of the company, ask whether the bank needs a notarized copy.
Do you need more information about Delaware incorporation? Read here.