Before opening a business banking account, the bank will want to verify your business with some basic business documents. Here’s what you’ll need.

Opening a business banking account is a big step in establishing your business and to begin accepting or spending money (officially) as your business. Business banking accounts help with accounting for your business and help you stay compliant and protected for tax and legal purposes.

However, if you’ve never opened a business banking account before, it can be intimidating to know what you need to get started.

What You Need to Open a Business Banking Account

Below are the main documents a bank may need for you to open a business banking account.

Employer Identification Number (EIN)

The first thing you will need to open a business banking account is your employer identification number, otherwise known as an EIN. This helps the bank verify your business’s identity.

An employer identification number can be attained through the IRS and is used for important business transactions, such as paying federal taxes, hiring employees, and applying for business licenses or other important permits. You will need your EIN to open a business banking account, as well as your EIN confirmation letter, which you will receive from the IRS.

If you are a sole proprietorship, you will not need an EIN and will instead need your social security number.

Personal Identification

Next, you’ll need to bring a form of personal identification, such as a passport or driver’s license. Most banks will require one or two forms of personal identification to open a business banking account and may ask that one of the forms of identification be photo identification. They will use this to verify that you are an officer or owner of the company. Valid forms of personal identification include a driver’s license, passport, or state-issued identification.

Business Registration

Every business account opened at Rock Canyon Bank must be properly registered and verified by the State in which it was registered. Verification of the following will be completed at account opening:

  • Business Registration from the appropriate State (registration must be active and not expired)
  • A list of authorized principals, members, managers, etc. as per the State registration.

Monthly Credit/Debit Card Revenue – For Merchant Accounts

If you are planning to open a merchant account, you will need information about your processing history and average volume of monthly credit/debit card revenue. If you’re a startup and do not yet have any processing history, the bank may ask you for an estimate of your monthly credit/debit card volume. If you have had transactions, the bank may request documents such as financial or bank account statements.

What to Look for in a Bank for Your Business

Choosing the best bank for your business depends on several factors, including the products and services offered by the bank, costs and fees, online banking experience, previous banking relationship, and more. Below are some factors to consider when determining which bank to use for your business banking account:

  • Existing relationship. If you’ve worked with the bank in the past, whether for a personal or business banking experience, it’s a good place to start looking for your business banking accounts. Since you’ve already established a relationship with them, it may be easier to open an account. It also means that you already have a good hold on their online tools, locations, and processes.
  • Costs and fees. Most business banking accounts have costs and fees associated with them. It is worth shopping around to see which accounts will give you the most bang for your buck. Look for fees such as monthly servicing fees, deposit fees, ATM fees, etc.
  • Good business banking reputation. Your goal is for your business to grow, so when you’re looking for a business bank, you should ensure that the bank will be able to handle your growth in the future. Make sure the bank you’re considering offers small business loans, lines of credit, credit cards, ACH services, merchant accounts, or other services you may need in the future.
  • Bank location. Unless you plan to do all of your banking online, you’ll likely want to find a bank that is located conveniently. You’ll also want to consider the bank branch and ATM locations and how those may suit your needs.
  • Online banking experience. Many business banking needs are managed online, which means it’s essential that the bank you choose has a reliable, easy-to-use online banking system.
  • Integration with bookkeeping. Make sure whatever bank you choose has a system that can integrate with your bookkeeping system. This will save headaches, double-entry, and errors in the future.

Keeping these factors in mind can help ensure the bank that you choose is the right fit for your specific business needs.