More than a Passport Required to Open Accounts

It is no longer enough to use only a passport to open a personal bank account in Costa Rica, instead an identity document issued by the Immigration Department must be provided.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Foreigners living in Costa Rica and diplomats must comply with the additional requirement of carrying a Costa Rican identity card in order to open a bank account, from 1st July.

"This is the Immigration Identification Document for Foreigners (Dimex) issued by the Directorate General of Immigration for residents, and Diplomatic Identification Document (DIDI in Spanish), issued by the Chancellery of the Republic. The requirement to submit this document replaces the current procedure, in which only a passport is needed, said Carlos Melegatti, director of Central Bank’s Financial Services," reported

Melegatti said the goal is to provide security to these foreign accounts. For his part, Mario Zamora, Minister of Public Security, said that many foreigners are serve as proxies for drug trafficking when passing through the country.

More on this topic

Costa Rica: Mandatory Dimex Use In Effect

October 2012

Starting October 1st, foreigners are required to use their resident IDs for electronic banking transactions.

Mandatory use of the Dimex is required for foreigners for any kind of transaction made through the National Electronic Payment System (IPNS in Spanish). quotes Carlos Melegatti, director of Central Bank Financial Services who says, "We are validating 100% of SINPE operations with identification numbers.

Documents for Foreigners in Costa Rica

July 2012

The requirement for using Dimex (identification document for foreigners) in banking transactions has been postponed until 1 October.

The date of entry into force of this requirement was scheduled for July 1 but it has now been postponed by the Central Bank, pending more foreigners meeting the requirement.

Costa Rica: Electronic Payments by Foreigners

August 2011

An ‘Immigration Document Identification Number for Foreigners’ (DIMEX in Spanish) will be used for all SINPE transactions.

From now on foreigners using the the Central Bank’s Electronic Payment System, known as SINPE, will be identified with a DIMEX number provided by Immigration. This number corresponds to the Immigration Identification Document for Foreigners.

Little Banking Penetration in El Salvador

November 2012

Only 14% of the Salvadoran population has a bank account.

As a way to promote financial inclusion, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Spainish-United Nations Fund for Achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDG-F), insist on the creation of a regulatory framework to govern banking services.

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Cordero & Cordero Abogados is a general practice law firm which specializes in corporate and commercial issues in Costa Rica.
Operates in Costa Rica
Phone: (506) 2258-2525 - (202) 7422778 (US)

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