While it is true that the legal age for most endeavours in Nigeria is 18, have you ever wondered if you could open a bank account even while still a minor (that is, not up to 18 years old)? Read on to learn more.

Requirements For Opening a Bank Account

1. Proof of Address

This is usually in the form of an utility bill that bears the same address as the one you want to fill in the form. It is expected that the utility bill (electricity, water, waste disposal bill, tenement rate and rent receipt) be not more than three months old. It is not compulsory that the utility bill should bear your residential address, it could also be your office/work address, family house address, or any other, so long as it can be verified.

2. A Form of Identification

This would normally be a nationally accepted means of identification, such ones like your Passport, Permanent Voters’ Registration Card, National ID Card, a valid Driver’s License. Also, if you are a student at the university, and you choose to open an account at the bank’s branch on campus, your school ID Card will also be valid.

3. Referees

This is a requirement for Current Account, but not for Savings Account. In the case of a current account,  two referees are part of the requirements.

4. Two Recent Passport Photographs

Some Other Things To Consider

  • Individuals under the age of 18 are not legally allowed to sign documents, such as those you sign when opening a savings account, as such you cannot open one by yourself if you are not 18.
  • Fortunately, you can still open a savings account by having your name and that of an adult on the documents. The adult may be either one of your parents, an older sibling, or another trusted adult. This person will be the ONLY authorised signatory to the account, and will have control of the account, with the ability to make withdrawals or deposits and close it if necessary; the reason this role must be filled by someone who is very trustworthy!
  • When you become of age, this authorisation can be transferred to you, or you could continue to operate the account as co-signatories if that is your desire.
  • You will also be required to provide details of a Next of Kin on the document, this is the person who will assume the rights to the account in the event that something happens to you and incapacitates you from discharging your legal duties as regards the account.
  • Some banks require a minimum initial deposit, while others do not, so check to find which one suits your needs. Banks also offer a myriad of other banking services like Mobile Banking, Internet Banking, opening a domiciliary account or credit account, and all such matters; again what services you accept will depend on your needs.

Did this provide you with enough information to help you make an informed decision?