Rocket Dollar has strict requirements. An expatriate or a resident alien can only open a Self-Directed IRA account in the United States with Rocket Dollar if they have a taxable income, a US primary residence, and a US phone number.
What are Rocket Dollar's specific requirements?
You need a mailing address in the United States.
This mailing address ensures we can send written notices as well as comply with know-your-customer regulations. We have a partner bank with strict compliance needs. All customers and beneficiaries need to receive an identity check in order to comply with federal compliance. As soon as someone is outside of the US, identity checks can become extremely difficult.
You need a US Phone number
After a two-factor authentication update for our customers. This update was made to increase the security for the great majority of our customers. Customers outside the US have particular difficulty getting text messages to get into their accounts. Our support team has normal operating hours from 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM CST in Austin Texas and cannot accommodate off-hours/24-hour service requests.
Some of our customers use google voice, as this is an online method to receive a US-based SMS message, if their cell phone service is not currently active in the United States. https://voice.google.com/u/0/about
Rocket Dollar continues to evaluate secure login option alternatives that would not need a US phone number to access your account in our product roadmap.
Use a US email domain
This allows you to get through onboarding quickly and easily, and pass knows your customer checks.
You need a Social Security Number
Proof of income may be needed during your Know Your Customer identity check.
What is the easiest identification for me to supply during onboarding?
A driver's license or state ID with your US address on it.
These rules make things difficult for Expats and people out of the country...
We apologize. We are a smaller team that is trying to drastically bring down the price of Self-Directed Retirement accounts. These accounts have long been way overpriced in the United States and it is Rocket Dollar's goal to keep them affordable. In order to maintain the service of our customers at our Silver and Gold pricing levels, we have to make sure we can quickly and completely serve our customers to their satisfaction.
Know Your Customer Laws, which push compliance requirements on companies with financial accounts are strict and must be followed by every financial company. Processes that do not adequately comply with these laws are something we cannot compromise on.
I'm not a citizen... what do I need to consider to see if qualify to open an IRA?
You must have income that is taxable in the United States
Retirement accounts are for tax-advantaged status, either to defer taxes or grow income tax-free like a Roth IRA. You need current or past income that is in another retirement account. Remember that you cannot withdraw savings until 59 and 1/2 for a Traditional IRA, so plan accordingly.
Some non-resident aliens might qualify for Effectively Connected Income (ECI) for early withdrawals from tax-deferred retirement accounts.
Who qualifies as a resident alien for tax purposes?
You have a green card OR...
You reside in the United States for...
- 31 days during the current year, and
- 183 days during a 3-year period that includes the current year and the 2 years immediately before, counting:
- All the days you were present in the current year, and
- 1/3 of the days you were present in the first year before the current year, and
- 1/6 of the days you were present in the second year before the current year.
To be considered a nonresident alien for tax purposes, you can’t have a green card nor can you pass the Substantial Presence Test mentioned above.
Be sure to check the tax treaties of your particular country of origin.
Certain countries have special tax treaties with the United States. Be sure to check them here.