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What are the requirements to open a bank account?
Have your information handy to make the application process run smoothly.
Requirements vary from bank to bank, but you’ll generally need to provide your personal information and verify your identity.
There are several ways to apply for a bank account. You can:
- Apply online. You can open an account online by filling out an application on the bank’s website or, if you’re already a customer with the bank, through your online banking account.
- Apply on the app. Many banks allow you to apply for a new account by following the prompts through their mobile app.
- Apply by phone. Some banks will let you open a new account over the phone. You may be required to verify your identity online, by mail or in person.
- Apply in person. You can visit your nearest bank branch to apply for an account in person.
Before you apply for a bank account, you’ll need to make sure that you meet any eligibility criteria that apply. These criteria vary depending on the type of account you would like to open but can include:
- Age requirements. You’ll need to be at least 18 years of age to open an account by yourself, although parents or legal guardians can open bank accounts for their kids. Different age limits can apply to special accounts, such as a kids or seniors account.
- Residency requirements. You’ll typically need to be a Canadian resident to open an account, but in some cases it is possible to open an account from overseas.
Other criteria may apply, so check the terms and conditions before beginning an application.
What information do I need to open a bank account?
If you’re an existing customer with a bank, they’ll have your personal information on file and you likely won’t need to supply any extra details unless you’re setting up a business or kids account. However, if you’ve never held an account with that particular bank before, you’ll need to provide:
- Personal details. This can include your gender, full name, date of birth and residential address.
- Contact details. The bank will require your phone number and email address.
Compare popular banking accounts
Opening a new bank account is a relatively simple process, but it’s a good idea to have all your personal documents handy to make sure the process runs smoothly. And to get the best bank account for your needs, compare savings accounts and chequing accounts before getting started.
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