Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a KYC?
KYC stands for Know Your Customer. KYC enables banks to properly identify their customers and understand their financial dealings to be able to serve them better.
KYC involves making reasonable efforts to determine the true identity and beneficial ownership of accounts, source of funds, nature of customer’s business, reasonableness of operations in the account in relation to the customer’s business, etc.
The objective of the KYC guidelines is to prevent banks being used intentionally or unintentionally, by criminal elements for money laundering or terrorism financing.
- Are KYC requirements new?
No. KYC requirements have always been in place and Banks have been taking KYC information and documentation in accordance with the guidelines issued by Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates and the concerned authorities in UAE from time to time.
In addition, the KYC guidelines reflect the recommendations made by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Anti Money Laundering Measures and Combating Financing of Terrorism.
- What is Money Laundering?
Money Laundering refers to the conversion of money illegally obtained to make it appear as if it originated from a legitimate source. Money laundering is being employed by criminals worldwide to conceal illicit activities associated with it such as drug trafficking, arms smuggling, terrorism, extortion, and other crimes.
- Is the KYC compulsory?
Yes. It is a regulatory and legal requirement. All individuals and entities wishing to avail banking services are required to be KYC compliant.
- When will the KYC be carried out?
We will complete a KYC process when:
- Opening an account for a new customer, or opening subsequent accounts for existing customers
- When the Bank feels it is necessary to obtain updated or additional information from existing customers, as part of periodic review
- Where documents as per current KYC standards weren't submitted when opening the account
- At periodic intervals as per Bank's policy and regulatory requirements.
- When there are changes to names, nationality and residence, signatories, beneficial owners, etc.
- What will happen if the required KYC information/documents are not provided to the Bank?
The Bank will be entitled to decline an account opening request for a prospective customer, or to discontinue the relationship with an existing customer, if the required KYC information and documents are not provided, or if the information provided is incorrect or misleading.
After giving you advance notice, the Bank may impose ‘partial freezing’ before deciding to close your account. A partial freeze means that initially you could continue to pay money into your account, but won't be able to withdraw it. In case of continued delay, we would freeze your account completely.
IIf you need a little extra time to get hold of the documents you need, Bank should be informed about the same. Granting additional time will be at the discretion of the Bank.
- What information and documents are required for the Customer Identification Program (CIP) under KYC?
Information and documentation includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Legal name and any other names used
- Current and permanent address, and contact details
- Occupation and sources of income
- Valid passport, National Identity Card, nationality and residency documents
- Tax related documents
- Legal name of the Company
- Official, business, and mailing address of business, and contact details
- Valid business approval documentation like licenses, Chamber of Commerce Registration, certificate of incorporation, etc.
- Business conduct documentation like Memorandum of Articles of Association, Board Resolution, authorities to open, operate and close bank accounts
- Details about the owners, partners, controlling persons, and authorized signatories
- Countries and jurisdictions of business and business partners
- In addition to the above you may also be required to provide information and/or documentation related to your business and account transactions.
- Who is considered a Customer?
For the purposes of KYC a "customer" may be defined as:
- A person or entity that maintains an account and/or has a business relationship with the bank;
- One on whose behalf the account is maintained (i.e. the beneficial owner);
- Any person or entity connected with financial transactions such as wire transfers or cheques or cash.
- What is a KYC Form?
A KYC Form is a form that has been designed for the purpose of obtaining the extract of the above mentioned required information and documents.
- How often should I provide a KYC Form?
Whenever there is a change to your financial circumstances, for example:
For individuals: Change of name, nature of income, change of nationality or residency, etc.
For businesses and entities: Change of ownership, change of activities, material change of income, etc.
When requested by the bank.
Please note that you will also be required to provide documents as evidence of any changes.
- Who is the person to contact at the Bank regarding KYC?
The contact person at the Bank will be the Branch Manager/Relationship Manager, or the Officer who opens the account and who is in touch with the customer for the transactions in the account.