While legislation, economic/social factors and public policies have an impact when deciding to form a company in a foreign country, knowledge of the local banking system should not be underestimated. For both national and foreigners, it is essential to have at least a basic understanding of the procedures and processes necessary to open corporate/company bank accounts.
In this article, our accounting team will provide useful information on how to open a corporate or company account when forming a company in Chile.
Some Key Points
- Although all banks account for commercial customers, the requirements for opening a corporate bank account vary from bank to bank.
- All companies, being owned by Chilean or of foreign owners, must first have an R.U.T. (Tax Chilean Number) in order to request the opening of a company/corporate account in a bank.
- Some banks have an ‘International Desk’ which can be useful for companies with foreign owners.
Types of Corporate/Company Banks Accounts in Chile
Cuenta Vista (Account at Sight)
This bank account is very easy to obtain. Banks will allow this type of account to be opened without demanding a great number of requirements and/or documentation. The package of services offered by banks when opening a “Cuenta Vista” is very limited. It generally only empowers its holder to operate a debit card and make online transfers. Unfortunately, with this account, you have no access to checks, credit cards etc.
In addition to the above mentioned, generally, the ‘Cuenta Vista’ accounts operate in Chilean Pesos and the banks are empowered to charge commissions for the handling and maintenance of them.
Cuenta Corriente (Current Account)
This type of bank account is widely used by companies/corporations. Unlike the ‘Cuenta Vista’, money from the “Cuenta Corriente” can be withdrawn through checks and at commercial stores. A “Cuenta Corriente” is extremely useful when requesting and obtaining credit of any nature. This type of bank account allows access to a credit line and a credit card; facilitating company operations and logistics enormously.
Opening a “Cuenta Corriente” Corporate/Company Bank Account in Chile
Among the two types of accounts available for corporations/companies, the “Cuenta Corriente” (Current Account) is much more attractive. A national or international company can open this type of bank account by choosing one of the following three alternatives:
- International Desk: A specialized area of a bank, that aims to provide assistance for the internationalization of companies, both for foreigners looking to invest in Chile, and Chilean companies that seek to go abroad. Normally, this option is only useful for large international corporations looking to establish themselves in Chile.
- Accrediting Income and Liquidity: A company that is able to accredit a significant amount of income, sales and recent accounting movements can easily access a “Cuenta Corriente”. The idea is to prove to the bank that the company has the solvency to meet and respond to its financial obligations.
- Naming a Guarantor: In cases of new companies, having no track record (especially those whose owners are non-Chilean), it is recommended to appoint a natural person (Chilean) who acts as a guarantor before the banks.
In conclusion, having certainty on how to open a corporate bank account in Chile, during the company formation process, is tremendously helpful and recommended. Biz Latin Hub has amble experience helping individuals and companies establish their operations in Chile. To receive tailored business advice in Chile, please contact Allan from Biz Latin Hub at [email protected].
If you are thinking of registering a company in Latin America, learn how our due diligence services can ensure your business success.