Suits Me® Simplified: Banking 101

Why Do I Need Proof of Address to Open a UK Bank Account?

Learn why you may need to provide your address if you want to open a traditional UK bank account, and what to do if you can’t provide this information

white brick wall background with an image of a blue front door, representing proof of address

A bank must verify your identity if you want to open an account with them in the UK. They will ask for a proof of address. There are several reasons why a UK bank needs to confirm that you are who you say you are.
However, its primary purpose is to guard against fraud and ensure that no one is attempting to open a bank account in your name. 

They will also need your name and address so that they know where to post documents, such as statements and other correspondence. Even though most current account holders in the UK conduct a large part of their banking online, there are certain occasions when the bank will be required to provide you with written correspondence on some issues.

Proving Your Identity to Open a Bank Account

To prove your identity, you must provide proof of address. Managing UK banking products will require you to pass a credit check for your application to be successful. As well as assessing your suitability for credit, a credit check is also a way to verify your identification.

You will also need to prove your identity, which can be accomplished by presenting a driver’s license or passport. Additionally, the bank will require confirmation of your address. This is because their bank accounts are only available to UK residents.

To prove your address, you are usually asked to produce a document with your name and address on it. These have to be official documents, such as utility bills, a local authority tax or rates bill, or a bank statement or building society.

Many banks will require you to have lived at your current address for a minimum of three months. If you are new to the UK, this period maybe more. If you have lived at more than one address, that information should show up in your credit report.

What if I Can’t Prove my Address?

There are many reasons why a person might have difficulty proving their address in the UK. They have only recently moved to the country and only have a passport to verify their identity. Passports do not have your address on them and can’t be accepted as valid proof of address.

People who are new to the country who have not registered with their local authority or have an account with any utility companies and, as such, cannot use bills as proof of address. While they may pay live in a house that pays local authority tax or rate and uses water, gas, and electricity, they will not have any documents to prove their identity if those accounts are not in their names.

There are options for people who cannot provide proof of address but still want to open a bank account. You can also open an online bank account with a digital-only bank. Some refer to these as fintech or challenger banks, as they operate exclusively online.

Alternative Accounts with Suits Me

Here at Suits Me, you don’t need proof of address to become an account holder. Our accounts are personal accounts that work similarly to a traditional bank account. You’ll gain access to an online account and our mobile app, where you’ll be able to manage your money on the go, 24/7.

We offer a whole variety of banking-like features including:

  • The ability to set up standing orders and manage direct debits,
  • Send money within the UK via a transfer, international transfers are available via a partner in the Suits Me app,
  • Gain access to our exclusive cashback reward programme where you’ll automatically get a percentage of your money back when you use your Suits Me debit card with our retail partners.

Opening a Suits Me account takes 3 minutes and you’ll gain access to your online account immediately so you can start managing your money. We don’t ask for proof of address or run a credit check. We accept 99.8% of all applicants – so if you’re looking for a suitable alternative solution apply today!

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