How long does it take to open an account?
If a company does not use nominee services and has a director appointed by the customer, it will not take long to open an account. If you have a nominee director, you will have to send application forms to him or her for signing, since many banks (not to mention Swiss ones) do not open accounts by virtue of powers of attorney.
The account number is usually assigned to the customer within a few days from the date of meeting with the bank representative. From this point on, the account begins to function in receipt mode. It will be switched to receipt/write off mode as soon as the customer’s documents have been received by the bank’s head office and all the additional requirements have been complied with: such as transfer of the agreed amount of the initial deposit for example.
If the account is opened online or by telephone and the customer has never met any bank officers (having, however, submitted all the requisite documents), the account opening procedure may take longer than anticipated. It is not only that it takes time to deliver documents to the bank, but the bank officers may also request additional corporate documents or information regarding the customer’s business, or there may be additional banking forms to sign, and so on.
And, of course, you should bear in mind that there are so called ‘difficult’ banks, where you can spend months trying to open an account, without being sure that an account will actually be opened.