Thursday, October 11, 2007

Banking for Illegal Aliens - Update

To follow up on my previous post, I had an e-mail conversation with the President of Blackhawk Bank. He are some notable quotes from our e-mails:

"One part of the government is strongly encouraging banks to comply with the Community Reinvestment Act by banking the “unbanked”, another euphemism for “illegal aliens.” The FDIC has a whole unit devoted to promoting banking services to illegals and, in fact, sponsors conferences on the subject."

I've done work for banks before. I know what he is saying when he says "strongly encouraging". It basically means he's being forced to give accounts to Illegals. How said is that?

"We file an SAR, a Suspicious Activity Report, on absolutely every ITIN transaction we do with the government which has all the information they need to know who is where. But, as you point out, the government does nothing with the information."

This is probably all that banks are allowed to do.

The moral of the story?


Banking for Illegal Aliens

I did a little survey this morning to see how hard it is for Illegal Aliens to get a bank account.

I surveyed three area banks and found that it's quite easy. Here are my results:

  • Blackhawk Bank: You need two forms of ID. The Matricular Card is "acceptable" form of ID. They also recommended a state ID or driver's license. Also an ITIN number can be used instead of a SSN. The person I talked to does not think that they report this to the INS.
  • Amcore Bank: The Matricular Card and a ITIN number may be all that you need to open an account. When asked about the INS, they seemed to indicate that they don't report Illegals.
  • Alpine Bank: You need two forms of ID. The Matricular Card is "acceptable" form of ID. The person I talked to mentioned a number of other items that can serve as the second form of ID, including credit cards. An ITIN number can be used instead of a SSN. When asked about the INS, they stated, "we do all required government reporting".
None of the people I talked with seemed at all bothered about giving bank accounts to Illegal Aliens. It seemed more like they supported the idea than anything else.

Of the above banks, only Blackhawk Bank appears to be seeking customers for their "Immigrant Banking Services". I was not able to find similar pages on the other banks' web sites.

Overall, a bit disturbing, don't you think?


Update: Bank of America gives credit cards to Illegal Aliens:,2933,251672,00.html