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Can a married woman open a bank account in her maiden name?
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# 1
foxyruby
Old 05-08-2009, 11:12 AM
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Default Can a married woman open a bank account in her maiden name?

Hi everyone

I wonder if I can ask all you experienced moneysavers out there for some guidance? My friend is a married woman and all her documentation is in her married name. She is about to go back to work on a self-employed basis, but wants to use her maiden name in her work for security reasons, and therefore needs some kind of account in her maiden name that she can pay into and at least have a cash card so that she can draw money out. She doesn't want to borrow anything, just pay in her earnings and take them out.

She has a squeaky clean credit history, and can provide her birth certificate showing her maiden name, her marriage certificate, and endless documentation in her married name including her (Barclays) bank account, photo driving licence and council tax bills.

She decided to avoid online accounts because of the potential name hassle, and instead focused on branches offering savings accounts. First she tried Bank of Scotland, recommended by this site as the best instant access savings account with a cash card, but the only branch in her area is a business banking branch only. After finding no other savings accounts in her area (Brighton) that offer a cash card, she tried opening current accounts at Barclays and Lloyds TSB. After having to endure sly jibes like "What's the matter, don't you want your husband to know?" and "Are you getting a divorce?" (which annoyed both her AND her husband when he found out), she found almost all refused her (even her own bank, Barclays).

Only one (Lloyds TSB) entertained it, but said she would need to apply in her married name first and after she's accepted in 7-10 days they'll apply to change the name, but can't guarantee it would be allowed. My friend knows she should keep footprints on her credit file to a minimum, so this isn't ideal.

The only other option she's considered is a business bank account that offers free banking e.g. Abbey or Cooperative Bank, which seems a bit over the top. And would they want to put her married name on the account followed by "t/a (trading as) her maiden name"?:confused:

Sorry for the long message, just needed to give you all the background. Do any of you know the law here, or have any ideas how she can get round this without falling foul of money-laundering regulations etc?

Many thanks!
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# 2
ahsan
Old 05-08-2009, 11:28 AM
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maybe she can try this

search in google for "tuxedo-eccount" as forum is not letting me paste a link.

i haven't used it but i saw the advert somewhere, she might be able to open this account.
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# 3
Biggles
Old 05-08-2009, 11:43 AM
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Is there a problem with opening a separate account, in her married name, to receive her salary? It would presumably be paid by BACS, so the fact that the employer had her maiden name on their end of the documentation wouldn't matter. If they (or anyone else) wanted to pay her by cheque, I should have thought the bank would agree to allow her to pay in any cheques in her maiden name, that would be something to check before opening the account.
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# 4
foxyruby
Old 05-08-2009, 10:28 PM
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Thanks Ahsan and Biggles.

The option suggested by Biggles is no-go I'm afraid. As I put in my original post, she's self-employed so BACS is not an option, and she definitely needs an account in her maiden name only.

I've looked at the eccount suggested by Ahsan and it could be a possibility, but she'd have to pay 4.99 a month as opposed to no charges if she managed to get a current account or savings account, so I'd be very interested if other money savers have any ideas. Are there any married women out there who have managed to get a current account or savings account in their maiden name? Or are there any legal eagles who know if my friend is within her rights to ask for one?
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# 5
Tigsteroonie
Old 05-08-2009, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxyruby View Post
After having to endure sly jibes like "What's the matter, don't you want your husband to know?" and "Are you getting a divorce?" (which annoyed both her AND her husband when he found out), she found almost all refused her (even her own bank, Barclays).
No suggestions as to where she should try, but why not try subtly manipulating the staff by playing along with the above? Try a white lie about "wanting to escape a bad marriage" and needing a separate account in her maiden name in which to save money to help with this?

I don't mean in any way to demean/disrespect women who genuinely need to set up this kind of arrangement - it's just an idea that could help solve her particular problem.
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# 6
foxyruby
Old 05-08-2009, 10:47 PM
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Thanks for that suggestion. I know that she wouldn't be happy about telling them a story though, she wants to do it properly. It does make me wonder how women who are genuinely trying to get some money together to escape a bad marriage manage to cope? With dice like these loaded against them, it's not great, is it?
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# 7
Lindy-Lou
Old 05-08-2009, 10:51 PM
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I have accounts in both my maiden and married names with the Halifax - don't see the problem as her NI Number will be the same for both names.

Foxyruby - bad marriage or not - I think every woman should have a 'runaway fund' ......lol
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# 8
foxyruby
Old 05-08-2009, 11:05 PM
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Ah Lindy Lou, that's great! Can I ask you: did you have accounts with the Halifax in your married name first to make the way easier for accounts in your maiden name? And do you have current accounts with them or savings accounts?

And are there any other married women out there who have managed to do this?
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# 9
Andy L
Old 06-08-2009, 8:57 AM
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She could open a business account in the company name (eg "FoxyRuby Contracting").
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# 10
Biggles
Old 06-08-2009, 9:06 AM
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In fact, if she were self-employed, she probably ought to have a separate business account anyway, and I'm sure banks are used to these being in different names (business titles, maiden names, anything).
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# 11
foxyruby
Old 06-08-2009, 9:05 PM
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Thanks Andy L and Biggles

She may well have to go down the business account route. It's just tantalising because there are married women, such as Lindy Lou on this site, and others elsewhere, who are saying that they've got a variety of bank accounts in their maiden names as well as married names and as long as the National Insurance number is the same throughout there isn't a problem.

I'm now wondering if there is a financial authority somewhere who could give a definitive answer on this. Maybe the FSA might cover this - I'm not sure that a family law solicitor would be the best route since the solicitor might not be an authority on banking regulations. And it seems really OTT to have to pay a solicitor to find out if she's got a right to an account in her maiden name anyway.
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# 12
iamana1ias
Old 06-08-2009, 9:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxyruby View Post
Thanks Andy L and Biggles

She may well have to go down the business account route. It's just tantalising because there are married women, such as Lindy Lou on this site, and others elsewhere, who are saying that they've got a variety of bank accounts in their maiden names as well as married names and as long as the National Insurance number is the same throughout there isn't a problem.
Not really. I'd bet that they had their maiden name accounts first, and their married name accounts after they married.

If your friend has gone to all of the effort of changing her name and all of her documents to match, can't she just use that name?! Sounds like a huge amount of hassle for not much point otherwise.
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# 13
foxyruby
Old 06-08-2009, 9:17 PM
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No, I've since spoken to a couple of women who said they opened their accounts in their maiden names after they got married.

My friend has security reasons for needing her account in her maiden name, something I can't go into here.
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# 14
Wee Bargain Hunter
Old 06-08-2009, 10:14 PM
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Sounds to me that it is not having photographic & address ID in her maiden name is the problem. Even when opening an new account with a bank you already have a relationship with, you may sometimes need ID - I've had to supply new ID for my bank.
Sounds like it would be much simpler to open whatever account she likes in her married name as she'll have all the ID. Can't see why there should be any problems simply changing her name later - all she'd have to provide is her marriage cert AFAIK. A friend did exactly this (but a few years after opening the account).
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# 15
foxyruby
Old 06-08-2009, 10:39 PM
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Hi wee bargain hunter

Yes, we've just found one bank who have offered to do this. However, they've said that they can't guarantee that their head office will accept a name change afterwards, we'd have to take the risk.
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# 16
iamana1ias
Old 07-08-2009, 1:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxyruby View Post
, we'd have to take the risk.
How is there risk for either of you? This sounds really dodgy
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# 17
looby-loo
Old 07-08-2009, 8:13 AM
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Hi
I'm with Barclay's. My dad always forgot I was married :rolleyes:and for 20 years he sent me birthday and Christmas cheques and cheques for the children's birthdays etc in my maiden name. The bank always accepted them as they knew me. I don't know if you could have a similar arrangement.
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# 18
foxyruby
Old 07-08-2009, 8:29 AM
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Thanks Looby-Loo but her bank (Barclays) has already refused!
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# 19
Wee Bargain Hunter
Old 07-08-2009, 11:22 AM
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I simply cannot understand how complicated this seems to be.

It's maybe because your friend was wanting to open an account in her maiden name that the problems arose as she did not have enough ID or info at the credit reference agencies. Has she actually been credit checked yet ie gone through the application process?

Women change their names all the time and banks are used to this. I think maybe your friend has got bogged down in details. It's not up to a bank to "allow" a name change. Just open whichever account suits her best (on-line or off-line) in her married name and sort out the name change later. Banks do this all the time. Just do it. In my experience bank staff can tell 5 people 5 different things but when it actually comes down to it they will simply follow proceedure. If you want reassurance your friend could check out FAQ's on bank websites for "name change" etc but I'd be worried about her getting bogged down in details again. Unless the rules have changed for fraud etc, then it really is a simple process to change a name with a marriage cert. Who cares what comments staff make as long as the job gets done?

Check out Quidco etc in case there are any cashback offers on new bank accounts as they are usually quite good . Good luck!
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# 20
foxyruby
Old 30-08-2009, 1:57 PM
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Ah, thank you wee bargain hunter! A couple of days before you posted your message, a man at Lloyds TSB advised my friend to do just what you suggested. She did so, i.e. she let him open an account for her in her married name, showed him her marriage certificate etc. and he credit-checked her on her married name. A couple of weeks later, when her new current account was set up and fully functional, he changed it to show her maiden name and it's gone through without a hitch. She missed out on your excellent suggestion about Quidco, but at least she finally got her account. So thanks for clarifying how it works. You're an absolute star. And of course your solution is now here for any other women who get caught up in all the misinformation between bank employees. Cheers!
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