Opening of traditional bank accounts in the USA for Indian citizens and companies.
Opening a US bank account for an Indian citizen and company is governed by FEMA regulations. The RBI has assigned the classification code S0023 in the A2 form, which can be found at this link: RBI A2 Form. This code clarifies that Indian citizens can open foreign currency accounts with foreign banks in any currency.
This enables Indian citizens to remit money under the LRS scheme, up to a yearly limit of US$ 250,000, and use or invest the remitted funds within six months. This flexibility allows Indian citizens to explore investment opportunities for up to six months and make investments at the most suitable time.
Numerous online NEO or virtual Bank accounts are offered by companies such as Payoneer, Wise, Zolve, Zenus, and other Fintech firms. These accounts are virtual and not direct accounts with traditional banks. However, some high street banks in the USA now offer account opening services for Indian citizens on a case-by-case basis, with the assistance of Ajmera Capital and ALG of India.
If an Indian citizen and company is interested in engaging in the following activities, they can open a bank account in the USA:
A. For Indian citizens:
1. Investing in real estate and agricultural land.
2. Making investments in the USA stock market, ETFs, bonds, and other financial instruments.
3. Invest in a new business or project to obtain a USA green card under the EB5 investor program.
B. For Indian companies:
1. Incorporating a new company in the USA as a subsidiary and expanding business operations in the USA, including transferring executives, managers, or technical personnel from India to the USA under L1 A & B visas.
2. Opening a branch office in the USA and/or investing in a company to conduct business in the USA.
3. Making investments in existing US companies with controlling rights and transferring executives and managers from India to the USA under EB1 (c) visas to obtain a US green card.
The USA Banks may evaluate each application on a case-by-case basis and typically require referrals or introductions for consideration. The necessary documents include a copy of the passport, a utility bill, an existing bank account statement, and a detailed application provided by the bank, along with designated email and mobile phone numbers.
For Indian companies, in addition to the above documents, directors and shareholders must provide Indian company Articles of Association, Memorandum of Association, GST and PAN card numbers, and a detailed application for opening a bank account.
It’s important to note that holding a specific type of US visa is not required, and there is no need to physically visit a US branch.
KYC (Know Your Customer) and verification procedures are carried out through email, mobile communication, and phone calls.
Generally, it takes 2-5 business days to open a bank account once all required documents are submitted, and there are no queries or issues raised by the US bank’s compliance team.
For more information, you may send an email to: email@example.com or Mo: +91 9974253030
The author of this article/blog is Prashant Ajmera, an Indian immigration lawyer and the founder of Ajmera Law Group. He has been a Canadian citizen for the past 30 years and is also the author of two books: “Millionaire of the Move” and “How to Plan for Your Child’s Foreign Education: Myth vs. Reality”. He has been assisting and advising Indian businessmen to establish businesses in Canada since 1993. Consult us