Payments, assistance & taxes

Open a safe and affordable bank account

Service overview

The City of Philadelphia has partnered with Bank On to help residents get safe and affordable banking services. By using a Bank On-approved account, residents can avoid costly check-cashing services and unexpected fees. They can also get access to online banking and bill payments.

All Bank On-approved accounts have:

  • A minimum opening deposit of $25.
  • Low or no monthly fees.
  • No overdraft fees.
  • Online and mobile banking.
  • Online bill payments.

Who

Anyone who meets the requirements can open a Bank On-approved account, even if they have debt or a low credit score.

If you’ve had a bank account before, but the bank closed it, you can still open a new account.

Requirements

To open an account, you must provide:

  • A valid form of identification, such as a driver’s license, state ID, or Social Security card.
  • Proof of your address.
    • If you are experiencing homelessness, you can ask a local shelter to use their address. You can also use the address of a friend or family member.
  • A phone number.
    • Lifeline, a federal program, may be able to help you get low-cost phone service.

You must also:

  • Make a deposit of $25 or more.
  • Be prepared to pay a small monthly account fee, if needed. All Bank On-approved accounts cost $5 or less per month.

Where and when

In Philadelphia, you can get a Bank On-approved account at:

  • Bank of America (Safe Balance Banking Account).
  • Chase (Secure Banking Account).
  • Key Bank (Hassle-Free Account).
  • Wells Fargo (EasyPay Account).

You can find out more about these accounts online or by visiting the banks in person. You can also get free help by contacting a Financial Empowerment Center at (800) 346-7445.

How

1
Research your options and choose the account that is right for you.

As you make your decision, you might consider:

  • How close is the bank to where I live or work?
  • When is the bank open?
  • What fees are there on the account, if any?
  • Does the bank offer services in my language?
2
Gather your documentation and the money for your deposit.
3
Visit the bank of your choice to open an account.

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