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Strausketeer

Can Dual Citizenship Spouse Open A US Dollar Account?

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My spouse and I are planning to purchase property in the Philippines in the near future.  She is a dual US-Filipino citizen.  I have read up on the requirements for a US national like myself to open bank accounts, but I do not as yet have the visa, ACR-I, nor the time to do this yet.  I note that one of the benefits of US-Filipino dual citizenship is to own and operate a business in the Philippines and to me this presumes that she would be able to open a bank account, preferably a US dollar account.  However, if 45 years of association with  things Philippines have taught me anything its not to presume or assume anything without checking the rules first.  I couldn't find anything definitive on this so I am hoping someone on this forum can shed light on this.

Separately, back in the day (2000) my wife had a peso account with a bank in the Philippines in a Manila branch.  We attempted to withdraw funds from another branch of the same bank in another province and were told that we had to use our original branch to withdraw funds!  Given the proliferation of ATMs in the intervening years, I (again) presume that this is no longer the case and that one can walk into any branch of the same bank (e.g., BPI, BDO, etc) and withdraw funds?

Thanks for any help.

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can a dual citizen open a bank account? In my case the answer is yes. When we moved here in 2012 my wife opened all our bank accounts. 

As to using different branches. Everything is subject to change. We do most of our banking with PNB. I know that if we withdrawal funds from a different branch a call is made to our home branch for authorization. If there is still a fee, I am not sure. Usually I am doing a good impression of a wall flower while the wife takes care of the details :hystery:

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 Thanks, Scott. I figured it wouldn’t be a problem but I wanted to ask. We’re coming here on As tourists for a few weeks;  since she’s a Filipino citizen I am hoping this won’t be too hard. I vastly prefer a dollar account to pay so I can’t.   Way too early in the planning stages to stay here for several months and apply for the SRRV visa. 

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1 minute ago, Strausketeer said:

SRRV visa. 

Our pleasure. If at a later date you are planning to move here permanently we can toss around the different types of visas for you to live here. IMHO, as a spouse of a Filipino citizen the SRRV is not the best way to go. But that is for a later topic

 :thumbsup:

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My wife is now a dual citizen but when we moved here she was a Balikbayan (only a US citizen). Not only was she able to open accounts at multiple banks (including a dollar account) but I am on all those accounts based solely on my having the BB stamp.

Of course as always your mileage might vary. 

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When we come through immigration next trip, should she use her dual citizenship papers, rather than the normal 30 day tourist stamp?  I'm not sure what the bank will be looking for.  Is there a special stamp for dual citizens (and me as her spouse?  She has a US passport but she can get a Filipino passport as well.  Next trip is only for a few weeks, but I'd like to lay the ground work for longer stays.  The bank account is crucial.

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Neither of you should be getting a 30 day visa waiver, you should be getting a 1 year balikbayan waiver. Use her US passport otherwise she will need to pay the travel tax on exit or faf around getting an exemption certificate.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Strausketeer said:

she can get a Filipino passport as well

 

9 hours ago, Strausketeer said:

The bank account is crucial

The following is my opinion:  The ID to get a bank account is crucial.  She can use a Philippine passport as ID to open a Philippine bank account but if she does not have it then it will take time to apply for an ACR card.  It will be faster if she has a Philippine passport in hand.  But as was mentioned above:

5 hours ago, Gary D said:

Use her US passport

. . . to enter through immigration.  Then bring her Philippine passport straight to the bank as ID only.  She may also need a secondary ID. The US passport might work as she wants to open a US$ account.  A Philippine drivers license will work, even a plastic learner's license because it has a pic and an address.  Thus even if she does not drive she can go to the local LTO and apply for a learner's license. Best of luck. 

Edited by Dave Hounddriver

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When your wife comes through immigration she will declare herself as a Balikbayan (you too) and get the stamp. That really will get her and you a hell of a lot.

Whether or not she is a dual citizen she can get a bank account as a Balikbayan. My wife initially would carry around her Philippines passport (expired and in her maiden name). I don't recall anyone ever needing it. OTOH she brought her birth certificate with her and that was useful.

For picture ID we got her a Phil health card pretty quickly, which is a government ID. Eventually she added a postal ID card, again considered a govt. ID. No drivers license or permit.

While she did re-obtain her Philippines citizenship, we've had no reason yet to get her a Philippines passport.

She has bought property and gone through the arduous getting the title transferred process. 

Follow some basic rules and your wife will have no problem getting a bank account or two or just about anything else you need. And as her husband you'll have lots of benefits as well.

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Thanks all for your advice.  This is a great forum and I look forward to doing a deep dive in past threads.

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