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Opening a Bank Account

A Wells Fargo bank is located at the Medical Center. It is open Monday – Friday, and the ATM is available 24 hours for deposits, withdrawals, etc. However, please feel free to use any bank of your choice. Let the bank representative know that you are an international scholar on a J-1 visa and that you need to fill out Form W-8BEN.  

Items to Bring to Bank

  • Passport
  • Form DS-2019 (J1 students/researchers/scholars only)
  • Visa stamp (in passport)
  • I-94 record
  • Form W-8BEN 

Instructions for Form W-8BEN

  • Use your full legal name as it is stated in your passport (no nicknames)
  • For section entitled “Permanent Address,” use your foreign permanent address
  • For section entitled “Mailing Address,” use your local US address
  • For section entitled “Form W-8BEN Letter of Explanation of US Address,” write the following: 

    “I am a scholar researching/teaching at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Centerwith a valid J-1 visa and Form DS-2019. I started my program on ____ (initial date of attendance) and expect to finish ____ (estimated date of completion).” 

    Once this form has been completed, the bank representative will be able to open the appropriate accounts for you. A minimum balance is usually required in order to open an account – check with the bank representative to confirm this amount.

Quick Reference

Pamela Melton
Program Manager


M-F, 10 am - 5 pm
Office of International Services
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Medical Center Blvd.
Winston-Salem, NC 27407
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Last Updated: 08-10-2016
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Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.

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