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I am on a B1/B2 visa and want to open a Boeing Employee Credit Union (BECU) checking/savings account in Washington State. My purpose is so that I could have a checking/savings account with 0 USD maintaining balance that I could use to save some money and then spend for travel and leisure and treating relatives, whenever I visit my relatives who are US citizens in WA. I have family members who have accounts, which makes me eligible. The only thing that I’m lacking is an SSN (which I am not qualified for because I am not a US citizen or worker), or an ITIN.

Can I apply for ITIN to do this? Is this a bad idea? I wanted to specifically ask if having a US bank account and an ITIN will have any future ramifications to my plans of applying for H1B, or like when my current company would sponsor me for an L1B visa, or if in the future I would decide to take a masters degree in the US via F1 visa, or if in the future there would be opportunities to apply for a green card via employment based immigration. Will this pose unnecessary risk and questions?

  • Are you sure you need an SSN or ITIN to open an account at all? – user102008 Oct 6 '18 at 22:52
  • Yes sir @user102008. I tried to personally come to a BECU branch during my last US visit and they didn’t allow me to open one because I don’t have an SSN. – youinc Oct 6 '18 at 23:18
  • Good afternoon, it stands for Boeing Employee Credit Union. Their website is becu.org. I have direct family members who have their accounts and are US citizens/residents of WA, which makes me eligible based on becu.org/members-matter/about-membership/Eligibility. The only thing that I’m lacking is SSN (which I am not qualified because I am not a US citizen or worker) or ITIN. Thank you in advance sir @MikeHarris for the advise. – youinc Oct 9 '18 at 1:07
  • I am not aware of any way in which the bank account could cause problems with a work visa or a student visa, but it could indeed cause problems, in theory at least, with a visitor visa (or visa waiver), if an officer decides that your having the bank account is evidence that you would violate the terms of your visitor status. I suspect that would be very unlikely, but I do not know. At a minimum you should be prepared to explain the purpose of the account and any funds it contains in a way that is consistent with US immigration law. – phoog Oct 22 '18 at 12:50

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