Open a Bank Account in Liechtenstein
Open a Bank Account in LiechtensteinUpdated on Tuesday 15th December 2020
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Opening a bank account as a foreign citizen or company in Liechtenstein comes with particular rules meant to protect the money and its beneficiaries. In Liechtenstein, you can open an offshore bank account for companies, or personal accounts which both come with numerous conveniences, considering the private banking legislation which is the same as in Switzerland. Setting up a bank account in Liechtenstein can be an easy process if you solicit help and legal guidance from our lawyers in Liechtenstein.
Types of bank accounts in Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein is known for its well-developed financial industry which implies the possibly of creating various types of accounts with the institutions operating in this country. Among these, the following types of accounts are available for creation:
- personal bank accounts which are available for natural persons with various activities in Liechtenstein,
- corporate bank accounts which is mandatory for domestic companies operating in and outside Liechtenstein,
- merchant accounts which are very popular among e-commerce companies operating in the Principality,
- non-resident bank accounts can also be set up by foreign citizens in Liechtenstein.
If you want to open a bank account in Liechtenstein and need support, our lawyers are at your disposal with various information and services.
How to create a personal bank account in Liechtenstein
In most cases natural persons decide to open personal bank accounts in Liechtenstein when they reside and work here. Considering that most of the transactions imply online payments and salaries need to be transferred by employers in the employees’ accounts, it is mandatory to have at least one account.
The list of documents that need to be provided to the selected bank depend on the institution chosen, however, they are usually the same for Liechtenstein residents and they imply:
- a copy of the ID,
- proof of residential address (a recent utility bill will suffice),
- contact details (valid email address).
In the case of foreign citizens, the valid passport is required instead of the ID.
The creation of a personal bank account can be overseen by our lawyers in Liechtenstein, especially in the case of high net worth individuals who can use such accounts for asset protection purposes.
Bank accounts for companies in Liechtenstein
A corporate bank account in the Principality can be opened with the help from our attorneys in Liechtenstein, who can explain the legislation and the rules you need to consider in this matter. From the beginning, one should know that there is no need to travel to the bank in Liechtenstein, in order to open a corporate bank account in the country. Besides filling varied bank forms, the documents of the company must be provided, also considering the following requirements:
• there is no need for a minimum deposit;
• you need to select the currency;
• you must provide details about your legal representative in Liechtenstein.
Once the bank account is open, you will have access to it with the help of the internet banking. The banks in Liechtenstein offer 100% confidentiality and there are no fees on the interest received. If you are a businessman who wants to open a corporate bank account, we invite you to talk to one of our Liechtenstein lawyers who can help you throughout the entire process.
How to open a merchant account for an online business in Liechtenstein
E-commerce has become an important branch of the retail industry in Liechtenstein which has evolved in the past few years thanks to the support offered by banks that offer special services to online businesses. On of these services refer to the creation of merchant accounts that can be linked to the corporate account of a company.
One of the main requirements associated to the opening of an e-commerce company is having a merchant account. This type of bank account is employed for the processing of online payments and eases the interaction between the customer and the company.
The creation of a merchant account implies the following steps:
- choosing a services provider (merchant accounts can be set up with specific payment providers),
- submitting the required information about the company,
- setting up the account and creating the user interface on the website.
If you want to open a bank account in Liechtenstein for your online business, do not hesitate to rely on our lawyers.
The advantages of opening a bank account in Liechtenstein
Setting up a bank account in Liechtenstein comes with numerous benefits; a high degree of tolerance is offered compared to banks from other countries. Besides that, clients can receive effective solutions for their demands regarding a proper management of their assets. A bank account opened in Liechtenstein can grant the access on the European financial market. Instead of dealing with the administrative part of opening a bank account in Liechtenstein, where bank signatories and authentication is required, we remind that you can rely on our team of advisors who can help you obtain a bank account as soon as possible.
Acts that regulate the banking system in Liechtenstein
The banking system in the Principality is regulated by the Law on Banks and Finance Companies 1998 and by the Banks and Savings Funds 1960, stipulating that banks accept deposits and assets under banking confidentiality contracts. All banks in the country are part of Liechtenstein Bankers’ Association in compliance with the “know your customer” rules and regulations where anonymity is ensured. Any businessman who wants to set up a branch in the Principality can be legally counseled by our attorneys in Liechtenstein.
The activities of the banks in Liechtenstein
The banks in the Principality, whether local or foreign branches, provide customers numerous financial services like:
• money deposits for both local or foreign citizens;
• money transfers and transactions from abroad;
• national and international payment facilities.
All financial institutions in Liechtenstein will consider the honesty, the parity and the impartiality regarding natural persons and entrepreneurs and their money deposits through banks. We remind that if you want to open a bank account in Liechtenstein as a foreign citizen, you should consider the rules and regulations in this matter, a case where our Liechtenstein lawyers can provide you with legal help.
Foreign banks in Liechtenstein
Even though Liechtenstein has a wide network of local banks operating here, there are also many foreign financial institutions that offer their services here thanks to the well-regulated environment. This is why it is possible for local and overseas citizens and companies to set up bank accounts with foreign banks operating through subsidiaries in Liechtenstein.
In the case of foreign business and citizens it is also possible for link two or more different accounts with the one in Liechtenstein when using the services of a bank operating in both Liechtenstein and the in the foreign country of the account’s holder.
If one decides to open a bank account in Liechtenstein with a foreign bank, it is possible to obtain guidance and assistance from our law firm. However, it should be noted that in most cases, companies rely on the services offered by foreign financial institutions in the Principality. It is often the case of branch offices created by foreign entities seeking to have a better control of the finances of their subordinated entity.
If you have any questions about the creation of bank accounts with foreign institutions operating in Liechtenstein, do not hesitate to ask our specialists about information.
Risk managements for financial institutions in Liechtenstein
According to the Banking Law in Liechtenstein, the banks and the investment companies in the Principality need to have a strong management control regarding the legal risks which might involve transaction endorsements and internal orders. A management plan must contain a clear organizational structure based on transparency, responsibility, effective methods to determine in time the potential risks to which financial entities could be exposed.
The development of the banking sector in Liechtenstein
According to the European Banking Federation, Liechtenstein’s banking sector is made of:
- 13 banks operating in the Principality at the end of 2019,
- out of these, 4 were subsidiaries of Swiss, Luxembourg and Chinese banks,
- Liechtenstein- registered banks have operations in more than 20 countries in the world,
- Liechtenstein banks hold assets worth a total of 44,4 billion CHF, as the country uses the CHF as a national currency,
- more than 25% of the deposits belong to Liechtenstein citizens.
We invite you to contact our law firm in Liechtenstein if you are interested in opening a bank account in Liechtenstein or you need certain legal services for your company or for personal matters.