Second Chance Checking

2nd Chance Checking Accounts are available for people with previous bad banking history. If you have overdrawn an account in the past,  there are very few options to enjoy the benefits of an active checking account.

According to the FDIC report, over 25% or 60 million American Adults are un-banked or under banked. In today’s economic climate, a working and accessible checking account provides many resources that are absolutely necessary to maintain financial security.

Our  objective is to provide the best resources for people that have difficulty opening new accounts.  Since the average consumer may not know where to discover the all information on how to find or open a second chance account, we will guide you with free information specific to your personal banking needs.

What is a Second Chance Account?

A 2nd Chance Checking Account operates similar to a regular checking account. Features include: direct deposits, a debit card, routing number, and may or may not include paper checks. Due to the fact that banks may feel a risk when opening new accounts for those they may feel “un-creditworthy” There may be a small monthly fee and or account limitations associated with these accounts.

Who needs a Second Chance Checking Account?

The #1 reason why someone needs this service is because of an overdrawn checking account in the past and having the account  closed with a negative balance. In this situation, the money still owed to the bank is kept on record and the person with that debt is reported to an agency like Chexsystems.

Other Terms used for 2nd Chance Bank Accounts

Second chance checking accounts can also be referred to as “fresh start checking account” “last chance checking” or “opportunity checking accounts” The name of the program will differ depending on which bank is used. Usually terms and conditions of all these types of accounts are fairly similar and are still designed for those who have had previous banking issues.


Over 80% of banks in the U.S. use Chexsystems to verify new accounts. When listed in the Chexsystems database, it may become very difficult to open a new account. It is very common for someone who is listed for owing a debt to a bank  to be denied when trying to open a new account due to being on the Chexsystems list. Once reported to Chexsystems, the applicant’s name and negative banking history will be recorded for 5 years. During that time it can be an uphill battle to find a bank that will let that person open a new account.

Early Warning Services

EWS (Early Warning Services) is another credit reporting and fraud prevention service similar to Chexsystems that is also used by banks to check an individual’s past  banking history. EWS was formed by 5 of the nation’s biggest banking corporations including Bank of America, BB&T, Chase, JP Morgan, Wachovia and Wells Fargo.


Telecheck is another agency very much like Chexsystems and EWS that can also be used by some banking institutions to discover if someone has had past banking problems. Keep in mind, if you had an issue with a checking account in the past, it is very likely that your name is recorded negatively on one of these 3 databases. In that case it is usually an uphill battle trying to find a bank that will accept your business.

Locations of Banks that Offer 2nd Chance Checking

Sometimes second chance bank accounts might not be readily available in local areas. In this case, the best option might be to look for an online bank that offers second chance checking.  Even with past banking transgressions, there are many ways to open a new account.


Second Chance Checking by State

Click on your state to find banks that offer 2nd Chance Accounts in your area.
AlabamaHawaiiMassachusettsNew MexicoSouth Dakota
AlaskaIdahoMichiganNew YorkTennessee
ArizonaIllinoisMinnesotaNorth CarolinaTexas
ArkansasIndianaMississippiNorth DakotaUtah
DelawareLouisianaNevadaPennsylvaniaWest Virginia
FloridaMaineNew HampshireRhode IslandWisconsin
GeorgiaMarylandNew JerseySouth CarolinaWyoming


Due to the present electronic based financial society, not being able to have access to a checking account can be a tremendous hassle. Buying money orders, manually paying bills, check cashing fees, combined with not owning a debit card to make electronic purchases can be time consuming and costly. is a free resource and guide to help those in need of a banking alternative to discover ways to get back on the path of financial convenience by opening a new checking account. Feel free to browse our site to get free information and links to institutions that offer second chance checking accounts to those with past banking issues.