When you bank around the world, it’s almost certain that at some point in time, you’re going to come across banks shutting down accounts…
And, if you have a business that crosses borders, like retail, consulting, digital marketing, or any other international trade your chances of account closure are even higher.
Having an account shut down (or frozen) can be disastrous for a business…
One day, you wake up and find that you can no longer send or receive payments. You can’t pay your staff. You can’t pay off your credit cards. You can’t receive money from clients. You’re money, in and out, is completely frozen.
If you’re a business owner or entrepreneur, just thinking about the threat of losing access to your money is enough to make your palms start sweating.
And it’s no wonder. Entire businesses have gone under, reputations have been destroyed, customers have been lost… all because your bank’s shutting down accounts so you can’t access your money.
If you think account closures and freezes can’t happen to you, think again.
This isn’t something that only happens to people from high-risk industries or illegal activities anymore…
The fact is, banks shutting down accounts can happen for any reasons, to anyone, and any business from any industry. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling soap or software.
It also doesn’t matter where your company is registered or where you send money to and from – although these factors can red-flag you faster.
You see, in many instances, your account is being closed because banks need to “tick boxes” and ensure that their algorithmic compliance procedures are working.
If they don’t, the bank gets hefty fines or risk being shut down themselves.
That means, if you accidentally red-flag your account because you did something that the banks computer-generated algorithm didn’t like and deems to be abnormal for your account, you could be on a fast track to getting shut down and having your funds frozen.
In some cases, banks will approach you to ask about the transaction. This is your chance to explain away the perceived infraction, calm their nerves, and give them confidence that you’re a good customer.
But, that’s changing.
Today, banks shutting down accounts and freezing funds without even giving you a courtesy call is becoming more common.
It’s true, you won’t even know that your account is shut down until you receive a check in the mail with your remaining balance or when you can no longer login to online banking.
We’ve seen this happen countless times. Sometimes closures come in waves. Or when a bank implements new internal protocols. Other times, it’s when certain jurisdictions get added to a watch-list and banks are forced to stop serving customers with specific traits.
This might mean people with certain citizenships or residencies. Businesses registered in specific countries. Or customers with certain types of transaction activity or behaviors.
In fact, some Insiders have received six and seven-figure checks in the mail from their private bank accounts in Hong Kong and Singapore, either because of their citizenship or the industry they work in.
With so much ambiguity around account closures, how can innocent people with legitimate businesses make sure our accounts don’t get closed down?
And the answer is, you can’t.
But you can be prepared. And you do that by ensuring you a) don’t accidentally red-flag yourself and b) open other backup accounts, and c) stay away from banks shutting down accounts.
Having a Plan B for your money and banking life means having a backup plan. And, that means making sure you don’t keep all your eggs (money) in one basket.
For example, if you already bank in the US, you might want to consider having accounts in Singapore, Hong Kong, or Panama.
The strategy for choosing the best country to open second accounts in is simple, if you know how to assess banking countries.
Likewise, the process for choosing the best bank to open up a second account is relatively straightforward, if you know how to choose a strong bank.
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