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How to get proof of address in UK - Complete guide

How to get proof of address in UK - Complete guide

02 Aug 2022

Do you know that more than 9.5 million expatriates reside in the UK? Without a doubt, the United Kingdom offers high-quality education, tremendous job opportunities, and one of the best lifestyles worldwide. Living in a foreign land like the UK sometimes proves to be challenging due to different procedures associated with day-to-day life activities. 

For some people, making an international money transfer is complex, and others might find it difficult to open a bank account or get proof of address in the UK. If you’re applying for a new bank account or a provisional driving license, you may have encountered a request to provide proof of address (PoA) in the UK.

Here's all you need to know about how to get proof of address to serve various purposes in the UK.

What is proof of address? Why does the bank need it?

Like its name says, proof of address is evidence that states your identity and your current residence.

These documents are required by banks to authenticate a person's identity and to comply with local or international legislation. 

However, it is not as basic and simple as it appears. For many years, forged proofs of residency have been a significant problem. The paperwork can easily be modified, and in numerous cases, a temporary address was fabricated to look like the original one.

Documents that count as proof of address

Banks have different requirements for proof of residence verification documents. Each bank also has its verification process, which requires other papers.

Commonly required documents for proof of address

  • Current financial statements of the person with the date of issuance and the person's name (the document must be less than three months old); 
  • Terms and conditions with the property owner and renter signature verification (the document must be less than three months old); 
  • Utility payment for electricity, water, internet, and other services (the document must be no older than three months);
  • A credit card bill;
  • A letter from a recognised public authority or public employee attesting to current residency not older than three months
  • A document for the ownership of a home

Banks and other organisations reserve the right to obtain additional identification and address verification documents if required.

Remember that even if you choose to send money online back home from the UK, you will still need to furnish the proof of address to open an account with a remittance service provider.

Alternative documents for proof of address

The following documents are only valid as proof of address if they mention the address of the associated individual.

  • Passport
  • ID card
  • Driver's license

It's beneficial to remember that the user's identity and residence cannot be verified using the same document. Additional supporting evidence will be asked at the time of identity verification if one of the ID papers shows an address.

What if you can't provide proof of address to the bank? 

It can be challenging to create a new bank account if you've just arrived in the UK and don't have all of the essential documentation. Utility bills and credit card bills are the most typical documents, and new residents may not have either.

Few banks allow different types of documents to open a bank account, such as:

  • A letter from the college or university, or language school if you’re in the UK for studying. Student Certifications can also work.
  • A letter from your employer confirming your address
  • A letter of referral from your existing bank
  • As mentioned above, different banks rely on additional document verification. So other documents can be used for confirmation. 

Are there any banks that don’t need proof of address?

A majority of the banks in the UK request to have your proof of address before proceeding to open an account with them. So, you’ll essentially need to get your proof of address beforehand to transfer money internationally from the UK.

If you want to know about the documentation required by several banks, you can visit their websites to check if you have the listed documents or not. Here are some famous banks you might like to consider:

  • Barclays
  • HSBC
  • Lloyds
  • Natwest
  • Halifax
  • Santander 
  • Nationwide

If you have read the details of your preferred bank and are still unable to meet their document requirements, you should speak with the bank’s representative directly.

A list of other options which a bank may accept depending on the situation can be found on the Financial Conduct Authority’s website. The FCA is the bank and other financial institutions’ regulator in the UK.

That’s pretty much everything you need to know about the proof of address for opening a bank account within the UK.

Online money transfer to and from the UK

Although banks have made online money transfers more accessible, overseas payments remain challenging without the assistance of a third-party money transfer provider.

If you want to use a fast, secure, and cost-effective money transfer method, choose ACE Money Transfer since it’s one of the most trusted remittance services. It has a growing network of millions of customers with 350k payout locations worldwide. You can get the best exchange rates, the lowest transfer fees, and the most secure international transfers with ACE to send money back home from abroad. 


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