Steer Clear of ChexSystems with These 12 Banks

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Navigating the complex world of banking amid a marred financial history can be daunting for many. ChexSystems, a reporting agency, plays a pivotal role for financial institutions in making decisions on whether to issue a new bank account based on an individual’s past banking and credit behaviors. This includes tracking instances such as involuntary account closures, bounced checks, and negative balances which could deem someone a financial risk. However, there is still some hope for those whom ChexSystems has flagged. Certain banks offer second-chance checking accounts or even opt not to use ChexSystems, providing a lifeline for individuals striving to rebuild their financial standing. This is how to Steer Clear of ChexSystems with These 12 Banks.

This article aims to shed light on 12 banks that circumvent the traditional ChexSystems checks, offering a beacon of hope for those seeking to open a new checking or savings account without the fear of past financial missteps hindering their process. From online banks adapting to the needs of modern consumers to traditional institutions offering products including second-chance checking accounts and prepaid debit cards, these banks present a diverse array of financial products designed to meet the needs of consumers looking to maintain good standing with financial institutions, regardless of their ChexSystems record.


Chime stands out as a beacon for individuals seeking banking solutions without the worry of their past financial missteps. Unlike traditional financial institutions, Chime offers a user-friendly platform with several key features designed to assist those looking to improve their financial health:

  • No Monthly Fees or Minimum Balance Requirements: A significant advantage for users is the absence of monthly service fees and the need for a minimum balance, making it an accessible option for a wide range of customers.
  • Innovative Financial Products: Chime provides a variety of financial products including:
    • The Chime Visa® Debit Card for everyday transactions.
    • A Secured Credit Builder Visa® Credit Card aimed at helping users build or rebuild their credit history by reporting to the major credit bureaus.
    • An automatic savings feature that encourages users to save a portion of every paycheck, enhancing their savings habits without additional effort.

Chime’s approach to banking is notably distinct due to its decision not to use ChexSystems or credit reports during the customer evaluation process. This policy makes Chime an appealing option for those who have faced banking challenges in the past. Furthermore, Chime’s banking services, provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A., or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC, ensure that deposits are FDIC insured, offering an additional layer of security to account holders.

  • Direct Deposit Advantages and Overdraft Protection:
    • Early access to direct deposit funds allows users to receive their paycheck up to two days earlier, providing financial flexibility when needed.
    • The SpotMe® feature offers an optional, no-fee overdraft service, initially up to $20, but potentially more based on account history and direct deposit activity, mitigating the impact of unexpected expenses.

The simple-to-use mobile banking app, availability of over 60,000 fee-free ATMs, and lack of overdraft fees are additional examples of Chime’s dedication to offering a second-chance banking experience. By focusing on the needs of individuals with a negative banking history, Chime offers a fresh start for many, enabling them to open a new bank account with confidence and ease.

Wells Fargo Clear Access Banking

Wells Fargo Clear Access Banking emerges as an accommodating option for individuals navigating through past banking challenges or those just starting their financial journey. Designed with inclusivity in mind, this checking account caters to a wide demographic, including teens and students, by offering a structured path towards financial management without the fear of overdraft fees. Key aspects include:

  • Monthly Service Fee and Waivers: A nominal $5 monthly service fee applies, which can be waived for account holders aged 13-24, linking a Wells Fargo Campus ATM or Debit Card, or with qualifying non-civilian military direct deposits. This feature underscores Wells Fargo’s commitment to providing accessible banking solutions for younger customers and military personnel.
  • Account Accessibility and Features:
    • Minimum Requirements: Opening the account requires a modest $25, with no minimum daily balance thereafter, making it an appealing choice for those with lower balances.
    • Overdraft Services: Notably, Clear Access Banking does not offer overdraft services, eliminating the worry of overdraft fees and promoting responsible spending habits.
    • Digital Banking Tools: Account holders benefit from a suite of digital tools such as Zelle for easy money transfers, mobile deposit capabilities, and a digital wallet for tap-and-pay transactions, enhancing the banking experience with modern conveniences.
  • Security and Accessibility:
    • Advanced Security: Wells Fargo prioritizes account security through 24/7 fraud monitoring and Zero Liability protection, ensuring peace of mind for customers.
    • Branch and ATM Network: Access to approximately 5,400 branches and over 12,000 ATMs nationwide, coupled with the ability to securely sign onto the mobile app using fingerprint or facial recognition, offers both convenience and control over account management.
    • Bank On Certification: The account’s certification by Bank On for meeting National Account Standards for safe and affordable bank accounts highlights its alignment with financial health principles.

Wells Fargo Clear Access Banking stands out as a second chance or a foundational banking opportunity, especially for individuals with a history of overdrafts or other negative banking activities. Its structure is deliberately designed to avoid the pitfalls of traditional banking that rely on ChexSystems reviews, offering a straightforward, secure, and inclusive banking experience. With the added benefit of a highly rated Wells Fargo Mobile app, customers have more control and insight into their financial activities, making it easier to manage money effectively and build a positive financial future.

Varo Bank

Varo Bank distinguishes itself as a forward-thinking financial institution that prioritizes inclusivity and accessibility for all its customers, especially those who have faced banking challenges in the past. Recognizing the hurdles that come with negative banking histories, Varo offers a suite of features designed to provide a seamless and supportive banking experience:

  • No Fees and No Minimums: Varo stands out by eliminating many of the common barriers to banking:
    • No monthly fees or minimum balance requirements, making it easier for customers to manage their finances without worrying about maintaining a certain balance.
    • The absence of overdraft fees, coupled with the Overdraft Fee Forgiven program, provides a safety net for moments when finances are tight.
  • Credit Building Opportunities: The Believe card, designed to help customers build a healthy credit score, demonstrates Varo’s commitment to supporting long-term financial wellness.
  • Easy Access and High-Yield Savings: Customers enjoy benefits such as:
    • A Varo Bank Account debit card, which is not a prepaid card, offering more flexibility in managing money.
    • Access to over 40,000 U.S.-based fee-free Allpoint® ATMs, making cash withdrawals convenient and cost-effective.
    • The option to receive direct deposits up to two days earlier, providing quicker access to funds.
    • An opportunity to open a high-yield Varo savings account equipped with automated savings tools, encouraging better savings habits.

Varo Bank’s approach to banking is rooted in the belief that everyone deserves access to essential money management tools, regardless of past financial mistakes. This philosophy is evident in the bank’s decision not to use ChexSystems or credit checks for account reviews, thereby offering a second chance to those with less than perfect banking histories. To open an account, potential customers simply need a social security number and an official ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, ensuring the process is straightforward and accessible.

In addition to the core banking features, Varo goes further in assisting customers to manage their money more effectively with innovative services like:

  • Save Your Change: Automatically rounds up transactions to the nearest dollar and saves the difference, effortlessly building a savings cushion.
  • Save Your Pay: Allows customers to automatically transfer a specified percentage of their paycheck into a Varo savings account, fostering a habit of saving without the need to think about it.

With its comprehensive suite of financial products, lack of traditional banking fees, and innovative savings tools, Varo Bank presents itself as a viable and attractive option for individuals looking to escape the limitations imposed by negative banking histories and ChexSystems records. Coupled with a high-rated mobile app and an A- rating from the Better Business Bureau, Varo is redefining what it means to be an online bank, offering a blend of convenience, security, and financial empowerment.

Capital One 360 Checking

Capital One 360 Checking accounts offer a refreshing departure from traditional banking barriers, especially for those concerned about ChexSystems. Here’s a closer look at how Capital One 360 Checking positions itself as an ally to those seeking financial inclusivity:

  • ChexSystems Policy:
    • Capital One 360 Checking does not use ChexSystems for screening applicants, making it an ideal choice for individuals with negative marks on their banking history.
    • While negative banking activities typically remain on ChexSystems for five years, Capital One’s strategy offers a fresh start for those who have suffered from prior financial mistakes.
    • Importantly, Capital One limits the use of ChexSystems to identifying credit risks and does not screen for checking or savings accounts, focusing instead on potential fraud but not on bounced checks.
  • Account Opening and Management:
    • To open a Capital One 360 Checking account, applicants must be at least 18 years old with a valid Social Security number.
    • There is no minimum deposit required to open an account, promoting financial accessibility. However, accounts not funded within 60 days of opening may be closed, encouraging prompt financial engagement without the pressure of immediate funds.
    • Capital One may consult ChexSystems for opening an account but primarily to check for past fraud rather than bounced checks or other negative banking activities.
  • Credit Information and Reporting:
    • Although not primarily using ChexSystems for account screening, Capital One may gather credit information from all three major credit reporting agencies, ensuring a comprehensive review that supports responsible banking relationships.
    • Account activities may be reported to these agencies, aligning with standard practices to keep the financial ecosystem informed and secure.

This approach by Capital One 360 Checking aligns with the needs of those looking to rebuild or establish their banking history in a supportive environment. By focusing on inclusivity and understanding the challenges posed by traditional banking barriers, Capital One offers a pathway to financial stability without the looming shadow of past banking errors.

PNC Foundation Checking

PNC Foundation Checking Account emerges as a strategic choice for individuals aiming to navigate their financial journey with a focus on budgeting and avoiding the pitfalls of overdraft fees. This account is specifically designed to cater to those who require a structured approach to manage their finances effectively. Here’s what makes the PNC Foundation Checking Account stand out:

  • No Overdraft Fees: Enjoy peace of mind with the assurance that accessing your account online and making transactions won’t lead to unexpected overdraft fees.
  • Savings Incentives: The waiver of the monthly service charge on your Standard Savings account for the first year as a Foundation Checking customer encourages and facilitates the habit of setting aside money for future needs.
  • Diverse Spending Options:
    • Zelle®: Enables swift and secure money transfers between friends and family.
    • Contactless Debit Card: Offers the convenience of tap-to-pay technology.
    • ATM Accessibility: Access your money without fees at nearly 60,000 ATMs, with the PNC Locator to guide you to the nearest one.

Moreover, PNC Foundation Checking Account is equipped with digital tools designed to aid in financial management, allowing you to:

  • Schedule payments for better budgeting.
  • Set up alerts to keep track of your account activities.
  • Move money effortlessly between your PNC accounts.

Opening this account is hassle-free, with no initial deposit required and a modest $5 monthly service charge that is waived for account holders aged 62 and above. Additionally, the account offers $0 cashier’s checks and a $0 overdraft and returned item fee, underscoring its value as a low-cost, low-fee account. It is noteworthy that Bank On has certified PNC Foundation Checking as meeting National Account Standards, demonstrating its commitment to offering a product that is accessible to all consumers.

This account aligns with the needs of individuals seeking second chance banking, a concept designed for those with a negative banking history. It offers essential services found in traditional accounts, such as debit cards, direct deposit paychecks, and a mobile banking app, without requiring a ChexSystems check. By responsibly managing a second chance bank account, individuals have the opportunity to rebuild their ChexSystems scores, moving towards financial stability and the potential to upgrade to a traditional account in the future.

Navy Federal Credit Union

Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) offers a unique banking experience for those looking to steer clear of ChexSystems. Unlike many traditional banks, NFCU focuses on membership eligibility over past financial missteps, making it an attractive option for individuals seeking to rebuild their banking reputation. Here are some key aspects of NFCU’s approach:

  • Account Approval Process:
    • Does not use ChexSystems for account approval.
    • Typically pulls Transunion for membership, focusing on credit rather than banking history.
    • Utilizes Early Warning Services (EWS) but not for the primary purpose of account denial based on past banking issues.
  • Credit Card and Account Management:
    • Instances where a member was initially denied a credit card due to ChexSystems records but was approved after resolving the issue, highlighting the credit union’s flexibility.
    • Offers overdraft protection and up to $20 in ATM fee rebates per statement period, providing financial safety nets for members.
  • Checking Account Options:
    • Active Duty Checking: Requires direct deposit from the military; offers $20 a month in ATM fee rebates.
    • EveryDay Checking: No direct deposit requirements; both accounts feature no monthly service fees or minimum balance requirements.

Navy Federal Credit Union’s approach to banking is designed to accommodate individuals who have faced financial challenges, offering a pathway to financial stability without the stringent restrictions imposed by negative banking histories. By providing second-chance banking options and focusing on the future rather than the past, NFCU stands out as a beacon for those looking to improve their financial health and access a range of banking services. With options like Active Duty Checking and EveryDay Checking, members can choose the account that best fits their lifestyle, all while enjoying the benefits of a credit union that understands the value of giving individuals a second chance at banking.


Navigating the complexities of the financial world with a checkered history can be challenging, yet the banks highlighted in this article prove that overcoming such obstacles is not only possible but also manageable. They stand as a testament to the reality that financial recovery and inclusivity are within reach, offering products and services tailored to those sidelined by traditional banking norms. These institutions underscore the importance of second chances in banking by providing a mix of second-chance checking accounts, flexibility in direct deposit and overdraft policies, and the avoidance of prohibitive monthly fees and minimum balance requirements. Their initiatives highlight a pivotal shift towards more inclusive financial products that cater to a diverse customer base, including those with past banking issues desiring to rebuild their financial standing.

The significance of these options extends beyond merely opening a new account; they represent crucial steps towards financial stability and health for many. By offering alternatives free from the stringent conditions imposed by negative ChexSystems records, these banks and credit unions pave the way for individuals to achieve a fresh start. Encouraging the transition towards good standing with financial institutions, the mentioned banks not only challenge the status quo but also promote a more forgiving yet responsible approach to personal finance.Therefore, this discussion not only clarifies the way forward for those who have experienced financial setbacks in the past, but it also highlights the crucial role that understanding and accommodating financial products play in promoting wider economic inclusivity and health.

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1. What are some banks that do not use ChexSystems for checking accounts?

Some banks operate without consulting ChexSystems when opening new accounts. These institutions may offer what is often referred to as “second-chance banking,” catering to customers who might have negative entries in their ChexSystems reports.

2. Is it possible for a bank to disregard a ChexSystems report?

Yes, it is possible. Although many banks and credit unions typically consult ChexSystems or similar consumer reporting agencies before opening new accounts, a number of them provide “second-chance banking” options. These banks may either not check your ChexSystems report at all or may be willing to overlook certain negative records.

3. How can I remove my name from ChexSystems?

Removing your name from ChexSystems involves a few steps:

  • Obtain a copy of your ChexSystems report.
  • Challenge any inaccuracies or fraudulent activities noted in your report.
  • Settle any outstanding debts.
  • Request creditors to delete negative entries from your ChexSystems record.
  • Wait for negative items to naturally expire from your report.

4. Which bank is the most lenient in approving new accounts?

The question does not specify a particular bank but implies that banks offering “second-chance banking” are generally more lenient and more likely to approve applicants with less-than-perfect banking histories. Make sure to look out for risk factors if you have outstanding debt. There could be higher fees if you make poor financial decisions. Unpaid fees are the worst with debit card purchases.

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