Once they step out of jail, opening a bank account for felons is among the minor concerns. The money you get after laboring at the job for year/s is minuscule. Gate money is also provided to the people who serve time in prison. However, it will run out significantly fast.
Some felons are relatively luckier with friends and relatives who might offer them a place to stay or few bucks to help reintegrate them into society.
Importance of a Bank Account for Felons
Some of the money you get from relatives and friends comes in checks. Moreover, employers also offer payments directly into the account, rather than providing a check or giving cash. The payment method of adding money to an account is known as direct deposit, and it is a popular method among several companies.
So, firstly, you need a bank account to ensure that you can get your salary and any other money coming your way from different sources.
If you have an old account, you should also try to access it. If there is a possibility of reopening the same account or accessing some money you had before the felony, you can try to do the same. Contact the bank to learn the information.
Where Does The Money In Your Previous Bank Account Go After a Felony?
If the crime is not financially beneficial to the felon, the account will have all the assets in it when you get out of jail. However, the bank fees might apply, and the bank can also make the account inactive if there is no activity. To restart the account, you will need to contact the bank.
In case of crimes that included financial benefits, the government might freeze the account. Depending on the resolution in the court, they might also seize your funds.
To keep the account running, you can temporarily give the assets to a loved one, provide legal authority to a trusted person, or put the assets in a trust and give power of attorney to a financial professional.
Once out of jail, you can work out the details to regain access to your assets.
How to Open a Bank Account?
Being a felon, it is best to go to the bank to open your account. You can ask a representative for the details you need to provide to start a bank account. Moreover, the representative is also helpful if you are unsure of the type of account required as per the circumstances.
Here, you can choose the bank to associate with for monetary transactions.
You will need to provide the following information to start a bank account at the bare minimum.
- Date of Birth
- Social Security Number
- Primary Identification Proof
- Secondary Identification Proof
As the banks can have different processes to open accounts, it is suggested to first check the organization’s requirements before visiting the bank. Check requirements for US Bank here and for Bank for America here. You can check for your preferred bank on their website.
Do not forget to check the acceptable identifications for primary and secondary proofs.
How to Keep Your Account Running?
Once you have your bank account, whether it is new or a previous one, follow some practices.
To begin with, ensure that you are doing transactions from the account to keep it running.
Read the fine print on the page to ensure that you are not walking into a bad deal. Some banks might have a minimum balance requirement or other hidden charges. It is easy to fall prey to these if you do not research the bank well beforehand.
Also, opt for a highly reputable bank to ensure that your money is safe.
In case of recurring payments, you can set up an account to make the withdrawals at the appropriate time for results.
Your bank account is essential for your credit score. Making all the payments at the right time can help improve your chances of financial success in the future. So, if you plan on building a life outside once again, having a consistent bank account is essential.
You will also need to consider getting all your documents in order. So, ensure that you have a proper paper trail to back your existence to the bank.
Felons do not necessarily have to struggle hard to open a bank account. But, it can become a challenge to have money in it. Hence, getting a job as quickly as possible is necessary for success.