Opening a Bank Account for your Business

By Frank Orlando; June 22, 2017

Just formed your business? Need to open up a bank account? When starting a new business one of the main requirements to operate will be to have and maintain a bank account and while it may seem a simple task, it can often be a trying experience. We have been, on an increasing basis, receiving calls from clients that are having issues with the documentation and information required by their bank. With this article, we hope to provide you with some basic information to make the process easier and, in the end, save you time. With that said, please note that all banks are different and may have varied rules and requirements. We suggest that you contact your bank prior to visiting to make sure that you are prepared to satisfy their business banking internal and “law-mandated” (USA Patriot Act of 2001) requirements, most notable being the “know-your-customer” (KYC) requirement, which we will discuss first. We will then review various business type documentation requirements and touch on opening accounts for customers and companies that do not have a physical presence within the United States.

Banking “know-your-customer” (KYC) requirements are implemented to prevent banks, intentionally or unintentionally, from being used for criminal activities; such as money laundering. KYC requirements are easy to comply with and include, but are not limited to, providing banks with the following documentation and information for the business and all business owners, operators, and signers on the account:

– State issued driver’s license, or Identification Card, and/or Passport
– Social Security Number
– Home address
– Phone Number
– Company Employer Identification Number (EIN) -AKA- Tax ID Number (TIN)
– Detailed company purpose and activities
– Company physical business address
– Company phone numbers
– Contact email


You should note that documentation and information of this nature are retained in banking records and are available for inspection by banking regulators.

In addition to the KYC requirements the bank will require specific documentation based on the type of business entity that you operate. This is where a lot of the account opening issues occur. Business owners are not sure what documentation is required and become confused as to where they obtain it (Accumera suggests that you keep all such documentation in your company kit). Further banking officers can confuse the situation if they do not understand that different states and entity types may have different names for the same type of documents. (For example, they request a copy of your Articles of Organization (these are the formation documents specifically for an LLC; however, you are registered as a Corporation and have a Certificate of Incorporation.) Remember that most banking officers are reading from a list of documentation needed which does not account for these variations. Following, please find the various types of business registrations and the associated documentation that your bank may request for each.

Sole Proprietor (If conducting business in this manner you will only need the following documentation if conducting business under a name other than your personal name)

– Fictitious Name Certificate or Statement
– Certificate of Assumed Name
– Business License
– Registration of Trade Name


General Partnership (If you do not have one of the documents listed below, simply provide a written statement signed by all partners indicating no written Partnership Agreement exists.)

– Partnership Agreement
– Fictitious Name Certificate or Statement
– Certificate of Assumed Name
– Business License


Limited Partnership

– Certificate of Limited Partnership
– Limited Partnership document


Limited Liability Partnership

– Statement of Qualification
– Limited Partnership document
– Limited Liability Partnership Election


Corporation (Inc, Corp, Ltd)

– Articles of Incorporation -or- Certificate of Incorporation
– ByLaws


Limited Liability Company (LLC)

– Articles of Organization -or- Certificate of Organization -or- Certificate of Formation
– Operating Agreement


The above documentation is normally provided by your business formation provider, such as Accumera, or attorney. It can arrive to you blank, and require you to complete to make it valid, or it may already have been completed for you and just require your signature. If you are still unsure how to obtain these documents you should be able to contact your provider for additional assistance.

If the principal office of your business and its owners, operators, and signers on the account are not located within the United States the KYC banking requirements become increasingly difficult to comply with. This has always been an issue with international companies looking to extend their reach into the US market. First, banks require that all account signers are present in the US to sign the associated signature card. Second, the bank requires that the company have a physical presence within the US with a principal office that can be visited to verify identity and to use as a mailing address. Due to associated costs to comply with these restrictions smaller startups may not be able to open a US bank account. However, all is not lost in this respect. Companies like Accumera can provide Virtual Office Services which include, a physical office presence, mail forwarding and phone and fax numbers.

We hope that the above information will make it easier when opening your new business banking account. Please contact us with any questions. Thank you!

Why You Might Need to do a Business Licenses & Permit Search!

Have you started your own business, or are you considering it?

Something that is often overlooked in the exciting and sometimes daunting process of starting your business is that there may be licenses and permits that are required for you to conduct business on a Federal, State and local (city, county, or town) level. The importance of knowing what business license requirements are associated with your venture can be significant.

Certain types of businesses, such as restaurants, construction companies, online businesses or even home-based businesses may have requirements which are very important to understand; but, you may be unfamiliar with in reference to your particular business and location. Requirements can range from a basic business license to operate within a city or county, to a specific permit to sell alcohol or lottery tickets for example.


In the United States, there are over 75,000 Federal, State and local jurisdictions or licensing authorities, each of which, have their own requirements. There are literally thousands of different types of licenses. Knowing how to contact these different jurisdictions and licensing authorities, knowing what their requirements are or what license types one needs can be far from simple, nor is it necessarily easy to obtain information beyond a basic level. In depth research can require extensive time, whether searching online, in-person or over the phone, with multiple government entities.

Worse yet, Governing bodies frequently change their license requirements and forms. Licensing authorities may have different timing and recurrence of filing requirements for different licenses. Frankly, understanding the requirements of one business license filing may not apply to other required filings.

Certain business activities have special requirements for business licenses and some seemingly common business events may also cause new unforeseen licensing requirements. Such as, in some states, changing a business name or office location can require an entirely new license.


It is important to note that failure to obtain and maintain all required business licenses or permits could end up being costly. Typically, businesses that fail to do either have to pay fines or penalties. However, authorities could shut down all business activities until all violations have been cleared possibly costing the company both goodwill and financially, or it could threaten the success of the company’s strategic plans if it were to cause delays in acquisitions/mergers, new product and service launches, or even the opening of new locations.


Accumera provides customized business license research, based on all activities performed within each state, to help you determine all State, County and Municipal licenses required for your business.

Your customized License Research Package results will answer the following questions:

  • What licenses are required at the state level?
  • What licenses are required at the county level?
  • What licenses/registrations are required at the municipal level?
  • What are the processes and the costs to obtain any required licenses?

Searches can be completed within 3 business days and include all necessary application forms, state fees, and filing instructions.

When the search is completed you will receive a comprehensive License Research Package in electronic form, with all necessary application forms, state fees, and filing instructions.

After reviewing the Package, you may determine to proceed with the required applications directly with the associated departments or jurisdictions, or you can request Accumera’s additional services of assisting with preparation and filing of the specific applications.