Thursday 04/06/2020

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Why do financial institutions ask you a photocopy of your identity card?

It may sound familiar: your financial institution gets in touch with you to receive an update of the electronic data on your identity card. Or because a copy of your new identity card is needed.

Why does your banker need such a photocopy? Well, basically because it is a legal requirement. According to European and Belgian laws, and in particular the law to prevent money-laundering and terrorism financing, all financial service providers in the large sense (i.e.: banks, insurance companies, accountants and so forth) are indeed under the obligation of ‘knowing their customers'.  One of the consequences of these regulations is that service providers are required to establish the identity of their clients.

KYC is a very strict regulation. If a financial institution is not in possession of accurate data, it is obliged to take appropriate measures, which means: blocking the account and even ending the relationship with the customer if necessary. It is therefore of the upmost importance that the necessary data are provided as quickly as possible.
Fortunately, new technology can streamline the process: by means of the web banking application, you can upload the data stored on the microchip of your electronic ID yourself. However, if you prefer to send us a printed copy of your microchip data, you are welcome do so as well.

What identification document should I produce?

Summary of the documents your financial institution is allowed to accept

Nationality country of residence Copy (front and back side) of a valid means of identification proof of address
Belgian Belgium

The electronic identity card 


Printout of the data stored on the microchip of the eID

Or, in the absence of eiD, a copy of a recent official document stating in the legal address:

  • Composition of the family
  • Tax document
Other nationality Belgium Possible documents:
  • Passport
  • Identity card

If the legal address is not mentioned on the means of identification, an official document stating the legal address should be presented as well:

  • Composition of the family
  • Tax document
  • Proof of residence
  • Proof of inscription handed out by an embassy
  • Driving license
Belgian Other country Possible documents:
  • Identity card for Belgians abroad
  • Passport
  • Electronic identity card (eID)