Reasons behind Freezing the Bank Account in Saudi Arabia: The most frequent and common reasons behind frozen bank accounts in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia;
- Failing to provide your bank with a renewed copy of the Iqama before the date of expiry of your previous iqama
- Failing to provide your latest salary certificate
- Failing to inform your bank about any changes in the personal information of the account holder, including new employer and new profession, which will require you to fill a form
- Suspicious or fraudulent transactions and activities by the holder of the account
- Not having even a single transaction in the account for a period of six months.
- Account holder’s death
How to Avoid Troubles of Freezing Bank Account: There are of course ways in which you can prevent your bank accounts from freezing;
You have to make sure that the renewal of your Iqama is already being processed, several weeks prior to the date of the expiry on the Iqama (also known as Tarikh Al Intiha)
You should remind your sponsor or the HR personnel in the company you work in about the date of expiry of your Iqama.
Make sure that you visit your bank and provide them with a copy of the renewed Iqama. It is advised to get this done at least 1 week prior to the expiry date on the old Iqama.
Make sure that you are providing the bank with your latest salary certificates as and when needed.
Make sure you promptly inform your bank about any changed in your profession, employer, personal details by filling out all of the necessary and relevant forms. This is especially important if you are intending to exit the Kingdom and then returning to the worker under the new sponsor.
Always keep some emergency cash stashed away for any situation where you are unable to use your bank account to complete any transaction.
You should pay off all of your outstanding bills, prior to the expiry date of your Iqama. You will also avoid incurring any extra charges in case your account is frozen.
Always make sure that you perform at least 1 transaction through your account in every six months in order to keep the bank account active.
If you take all of these precautions and still your account gets frozen, then don’t lose hope, there is still much which can be done. Depending on the actual reason of why your bank account has been frozen, there are some ways to actually unfreeze it with ease;
Procedure to Unfreeze a Frozen Bank Account in Saudi Arabia
If your bank account has been frozen due to the expiry of your Iqama, or if you have failed to provide the bank with details and a copy of your new Iqama, then you will need to visit the bank along with the renewed Iqama and also the details of your account.
Once you have provided the bank with proof of your identity alongside your new Iqama and their documents, such as the data update form or salary certificate, your account will be unfrozen shortly.
If your account has been frozen due to any suspicious transaction, suspicion of fraud, embezzlement or any other reason of this nature, then you need to visit your bank along with your documents of identification and any other papers or documents which are related to your account in order to know the detailed procedure which will be required in order to unfreeze or activate your account.
If you have exited the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and are returning under a new sponsor, then you will likely find that your old account has been frozen. In this case, you will need to visit the bank and will have to prove your identity. Once done, you will be allowed to open another account, which will automatically be added to the total balance of your old account. The bank will, however, deduce some charges from your old balance.
If the bank account of a family member or close relative has been frozen due to their death, they are next of kin can claim their assets after providing the bank with the necessary legal documents and proving the relationship with the deceased.
Although the exact processes may vary from one bank to the other, the tips mentioned above will help in preventing and resolving most of the frozen bank account problems in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Frequently Asked Questions about Frozen Bank Accounts in Saudi Arabia
How long does it take for the frozen account to be unfrozen or activated again?
It usually depends upon the bank, it can range from a few hours to even a few days.
What is a frozen account and how does it have an effect on the account holder?
A frozen account is an account which has been disabled temporarily by the bank. The account holder cannot use any facility of the account such as money transfer, cash withdrawal, debit or credit cards or even net banking.
Which of the documents are required in order to unfreeze the accounts?
In general, a copy of the new Iqama is required along with a customer data update form while the banks also require a salary certificate in some cases. If the account has been frozen for any other reason, then additional documents may be required.
What happens to all of the money which is left in the frozen accounts?
The money which is in the account will remain there for a period of time which can also be reclaimed by the holder if the account is successfully unfrozen.
What are some of the most common or usual reasons behind the accounts being frozen in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia?
Generally, the accounts are frozen when the residence permit or identity documents which have been provided to the bank will reach their date of expiry, or if the holder of the account fails in providing a renewed iqama prior to the expiry of the old one. Other reasons can also include fraudulent or suspicious activity and transactions.