Opening a UK offshore bank account can be difficult for a non-resident as the eligibility requirements of most of the UK banks make it clear that in order to open accounts with them, you must be a resident of the UK. This is because UK banks have to perform identity checks and follow anti-money laundering regulations whenever someone applies for a business bank account.
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These checks can be done rather easily if you live in the UK. However, if you don't live in the UK, performing these checks is more difficult and time-consuming. As a result, many banks won't accept applications from non-residents to avoid these problems.
Despite this, there are company formation agents that offer offshore bank accounts for non-residents.
Also read: What is the role of a UK Nominee Director?
It is legal to open a UK business bank account even if you are not a resident of the UK.
The terms and conditions of each account should always be read carefully because if you are not a UK resident, the provider may impose additional conditions or request additional documentation.
If you're a non-UK resident and looking to open a business account in the UK, you have two options, including:
1. UK high street bank accounts
2. EMI bank accounts (Digital bank accounts)
Also read: How to set up a UK limited company online?
UK high street bank accounts
However, they can impose additional conditions, such as the requirement that your company must be registered in the UK and have at least one owner who resides there.
If you don't live in the UK, it might be difficult for you to visit a branch for the application process.
In this case you can take the help of RTRSupports Limited, a UK based offshore company provider who provides UK nominee directors from the UK who visit UK branch for all physical documentations and meetings on behalf of the clients.
Digital bank accounts
The opening of a bank account in the UK as a non-resident may also be possible through digital banks.
Finding a bank that will accept applications from people who don't live in the UK may be simpler because digital providers don't have physical locations and only operate online. You won't need to go to a branch to verify your identity because they conduct all of their checks online.