Updated August 2021
You can receive your US pension in the Philippines faster and more securely by opening a Direct Deposit US Pensioner account at a bank here in the Philippines or at a Philippine bank branch in the U.S.
US Pensions Eligible for Direct Deposit
Any of the following US pensions or payments is eligible for Direct Deposit:
- Social Security
- Supplemental Security Income
- Railroad Retirement
- Civil Service Retirement
- VA Pension
- Federal Salary or Military Civilian Pay
- Military Active Pay
- Military Retiree Pay
- Military Survivor Pay
- World War II Veteran Pension
- Other Pension from a US Government Agency
Requirements for Opening a Direct Deposit Account
- Bring at least 2 valid IDs, preferably your passport, driver’s license, or any other valid government photo ID.
- Bring also your document/s showing that you are a US pensioner.
- You will accomplish the US Treasury-prescribed form: Direct Deposit Sign-Up Form
- You will open an account under your name only. Joint account is not allowed.
- Some banks offer this Direct Deposit account only as a passbook account without a debit card or an ATM card.
- For those receiving US Social Security pension, there’s now a Direct Deposit Sign-Up Form exclusively for the Philippines: Direct Deposit Sign-Up Form (Philippines) or see it here: Direct Deposit Form
MORE FORMS TO FILL UP
Be prepared to present additional documents and accomplish more forms resulting from the implementation of the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) .
FATCA requires all non-US financial institutions (such as Philippine banks) to report relevant information on financial accounts held by US persons to the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
The Philippines signed a FATCA agreement with the US in 2015. Philippine financial institutions will report relevant information on accounts of US persons to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) rather than directly to the IRS. The IRS will, in turn, transmit to the BIR relevant information on US accounts of Philippine residents.
Direct Deposit Accounts Offered by Philippine Banks
PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK (PNB)
PNB Direct Deposit Account (Passbook Account)
Your US pension will be directly deposited to your PNB passbook account through the Fedline System of PNB Guam, PNB Los Angeles and PNB New York.
Open your PNB Direct Deposit Passbook Account at the:
. PNB branch nearest your residence in the Philippines
(You will be allowed to withdraw over the counter only at your branch)
. PNB Los Angeles branch
. PNB New York branch
. PNB Guam branch
Your account can be either a peso or a US dollar passbook account.
. USTW checks
. US Social Security ID
. Letter from the US Federal Agency
. 2 government issued photo-IDs (driver’s license, SSS/ GSIS ID, voter’s ID, PRC license, passport)
. 2 ID pictures (1×1 or 2×2)
Peso account – 100 pesos
Dollar account – 200 US dollars
Maintaining Balance Requirement:
Peso Account – 100 pesos
Dollar Account – 200 US dollars
Penalty for not maintaining your account for 2 consecutive months:
55 pesos for peso account
10 US dollard for US dollar account
View the Direct Deposit Sign-Up Form prescribed by the US Treasury Department.
Metrobank Superbilis Pension (Passbook Account)
You can open a peso or dollar US Pension passbook account at a Metrobank branch here in the Philippines. It can be a savings account or a checking account.
It should be a single account under your name. A joint account for receiving your US pension is not allowed.
You can choose to open a new account exclusively for your US pension, or you can choose to use your existing Metrobank savings account.
You can also visit or email the Metrobank branch in New York:
Phone: (800) 863-8762 / (212) 832-0855
Metrobank New York Branch
10 East 53rd Street
New York, NY 10022
By subway: Take E or V train to Fifth Avenue station.
By car: Drive to East 53rd street just East of Fifth Avenue
Mon to Fri : 9am to 5pm
Minimum initial deposit: 500 pesos
Minimum maintaining balance: 500 pesos
Minimum average daily balance to earn interest: 10,000 pesos
Savings interest rate: 0.25% per year
Penalty for not maintaining MADB for 2 consecutive months: 300 pesos
US Dollar Account
Minimum initial deposit: 100 USD
Minimum Maintaining Balance: 100 USD
Minimum Average Daily Balance to Earn Interest: 500 USD
Savings Interest Rate: 0.125% per year
Penalty for not maintaining MADB for 2 consecutive months: 5 USD
Easy Dollar Pension account
You can open an individual peso savings account or a US dollar savings account to where your US pension will be directly credited by the US Federal agency that provides your pension.
Just visit a Landbank branch with your IDs and documents.24/7 Customer Care Center Phone: (+632) 405-7000
For BDO, BPI and China Bank US Pension Direct Deposit accounts:
Sorry I can’t find the newest updates yet on their websites. Maybe it has something to do with the FATCA implementation. But I think they’re still offering Direct Deposit accounts.
BDO Direct Deposit
You can receive your US pension through a BDO Direct Deposit savings account.
It can be a peso or a US dollar savings account.
No initial deposit requirement
No maintaining balance requirement
Minimum balance to earn interest: 5,000 pesos
US Dollar Account
Minimum balance to earn interest: 500 US dollars
For more info, call BDO at 631-8000 or visit a BDO branch
BANK OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS (BPI)
BPI Direct Deposit Account
Your pension will be credited to your BPI savings account throught the Automated Clearing House facility of the Bank of New York.
How fast? Credited to your BPI account within 24 hours from receipt of your pension from the government agency
Go to the nearest BPI or BPI Family Bank and open your Peso or Dollar Passbook Savings account. You will fill up a US Treasury Direct Deposit Enrollment Form.
Bring at least 2 valid IDs (your passport, driver’s license, SSS/GSIS ID or any other valid ID) and any document showing that you are a US pensioner.
Maintaining balance for a US dollar savings account: 100 US dollars
Maintaining balance for a peso savings account: 1,000 pesos
Penalty for falling below the maintaining balance:
US dollar account: 5 US dollars (BPI and BPI Family)
Peso account: 300 pesos (BPI); 250 pesos (BPI Family)
China Passbook Savings Account
Open a China Bank passbook savings account to receive your US pension.
Minimum maintaining balance:
Peso Passbook Savings: 1,000 pesos
US Dollar Savings: 100 US dollars
Transaction Fee for Pension Credit:
Credit to Peso Passbook Savings: $1.50 + Documentary Stamps Tax
(30 centavos for every 200 pesos or fraction thereof)
Credit to US Dollar Savings: 3 US dollars
Bring at least 2 valid IDs and your Notice of Pension or Payment.
You will also accomplish the US Treasury Direct Deposit Sign-up Form.
US Pensioner in the Philippines
Credit for photo above:
Lakawon Island Resort, Cadiz City, Philippines
Photo by Louie Martinez on Unsplash
WHAT IF MY ATM IS CLOSED.HOW CAN I CLAIM MY PENSION?I STAY HERE IN PHIL.FOR ALMOST 5 YEARS ALREADY.
Hi Fermin, sorry for the late reply. Is your atm card from a Philippine bank? I hope you’ve already gone to your bank and have your atm card replaced. Is your atm card issued by a US bank? You can go to PNB, BDO, BPI, Metrobank, Chinabank or Landbank with your IDs and ask about opening an account to receive your US pension.
Hello. I will be 62 in July 2019 and will be eligible for u.s.a.SSS pension. What month in 2019 should I start filing for my pension? Should it be at Ermita,U.S. émbassy? Currently, I have peso atm PNB acct, and dollar BPI passbook acct. both opened here in Phil.,can I use any of these for my direct deposit processing? Thank you and have a good day.
Hi Henry, based on information from the US SSA website, you can file for your pension not more than 4 months in advance, so this means you can file in April or May. SSA recommends filing your claim online at this SSA website page. There are instructions you can read before starting your application. If you’re not comfortable filing online, yes, you can go to the US Embassy at Ermita. You might also want to call first to see if they require prior appointment:
Federal Benefits Unit
Fax: 632-708-9714 or 632-708-9723
About PNB and BPI, yes, both of these banks offer Direct Deposit accounts for US pensioners, but PNB requires a passbook account (peso or dollar), withdrawal only at your branch and a maintaining balance. If you’re near a BDO branch, BDO doesn’t require a maintaining balance, and might offer a debit card.
Hi we are planning to transfer our US account(ssa pension) to Philippine bank (BDO). Like how long will it be to be credited on my new account if we file this month? Thank you. And what will be the requirements then
Hi Joana, sorry I don’t know how fast or slow will the change take effect, but comments online say it will take from 1 to 2 months. Their advice is that you do not close your old bank account until you get your next pension through your new account. Check or create your online SS account US SSA Direct Deposit to get more info. After opening your US pension account with BDO (tell BDO you’re transferring your old Direct Deposit to them), ask the branch their bank routing transit number — you need to enter this info when you make the change at US SSA.
my father’s atm card issued by US Bank has expired last March 2019 and he is here in the Philippines and could not withdraw his pension. Can he still enroll for a direct deposit US pensioner account here? What do you suggest? Thank you.
Hi glenda, yes, he can enroll here. But there could be pensions that have already been sent to US Bank, so he still needs to renew this US Bank atm card. And if he decides to change banks, the change might take time. If he decides to go to a Philippine bank (BDO, PNB, Metrobank, BPI), he should mention that he is already receiving his pension directly from a US bank and that his atm card expired.
But, I think, if your father is just here for a short vacation, then he should just renew his US Bank atm card when he goes back to the US.
Can you open a direct deposit account if your ATM card issued by US bank has just expired? What can you suggest? Thank you.
Can you open a bank account (dollar and peso) at BPI here in the US? If so, can it be opened online since I’m not living near a BPI branch? If I’m in the Philippines will this bank account be the same as if I opened a BPI account in the Philippines? I will be applying for a SRRV in the Philippines and I would like to establish my Philippine bank account here while I’m here in the US.
Hi Robert, sorry, there’s no BPI branch in the US, only BPI remittance partners. Only 2 Philippine banks operate there: PNB and Metrobank in New York. Both banks offer Direct Deposit accounts for US pensioners. PNB has instructions related to your inquiry here: PNB Los Angeles. PNB also has a branch in New York
Thank you Miss Nora!
My wife and I may be retiring to the Philippines next year. I would like to have my Social Security, VA benefits, a state retirement and local government pension forwarded to the Philippines, if everything falls into place. Can this be done relatively easy?
Hi Robert, sorry for my delayed reply. Yes, your US benefits/pensions can be received in the Philippines. But processing here might not be as fast as you expect, so it’s better for you to maintain a US account with a Visa or Mastercard debit card, so you can withdraw money from this account through Philippine atms, as you open your Direct Deposit account here in the Philippines and wait for its processing. Processing can be made faster if you’re near PNB LA and NY and Metrobank NY, but if you’re far from these locations, it would be best to have a US debit card which you can use in Philippine atms (around $4 atm withdrawal fee). Many expats sharing info on online forums also advise others to maintain a US account for unexpected payments in the US or changes in plans.
I have a PNB account in the Philippines, but im in the US, can i withdraw from PNB Los Angeles branch?
Hi John, does your PNB atm have a Visa or Mastercard logo? I think it’s cheaper and faster if you withdraw from an ATM there, as you’ll only pay for the atm withdrawal fee there. PNB LA website says it can facilitate transfer of money from your Philippine PNB account for a $75 fee and it needs time to process it. Info is here: PNB LA funds transfer
Hi, stayed in the Philippines for more than a year now, got a landbank account and already processed direct deposit of VA pension, does landbank offer direct deposit? if yes how long do they process it?
Hi Camila, do you mean your VA pension is on a direct deposit to a bank in the US? and you want to change to direct deposit now with Landbank? Sorry I don’t know how long will it be processed, as all institutions now including the US Embassy are affected by the pandemic. And I’m not sure if Landbank are processing Direct Deposit. The ones I know which are experienced with Direct Deposit are PNB, BDO, BPI and Metrobank. PNB and Metrobank also have branches in the USA. You might want to open your Direct Deposit with any of these 4 banks. And don’t close yet your US account receiving your VA pension, as Direct Deposit processing might take time during this pandemic. I think that these banks offer only a passbook account for Direct Deposit to comply with US federal rules, so if you want to transact purely online, the better option might be to maintain your US account, then transfer money to your Philippine account through Xoom (peso or dollar) or Transferwise (peso only).
Hi Nora. Going through the previous comments and replies brings me to this question; Do I get dollar or peso when I use my US bank (dollar account) with Visa logo in any atm machines in the Philippines while my direct deposit in a Philippine bank is in process?
Hi Edgar, you get pesos from ATMs in the Philippines. Most ATMs disburse up to 10k pesos per withdrawal (200 to 250 pesos fee per withdrawal). I’m not sure if HSBC ATMs still disburse 20k pesos per withdrawal. I think it’s only Citibank ATMs that disburse dollars in the Philippines: Citibank ATM locations
I have a Citi account in the US. Do I have to open an Citi account in the Philippines?
Hi Will, maybe it’s better to open a Philippine account with another bank, like BDO or BPI, since these have more branches and ATMs around the country. Citibank also requires a 1-million-peso minimum maintaining balance (Citi calls it relationship balance), has only a few ATMs and just 3 branches, and will be closing its consumer banking operations soon, after finding a buyer (also in other Asian countries) and will focus on corporations and institutions.
To transfer money online, you can use online money transfer companies like XOOM (can transfer to either peso and dollar account or for cash pickup) and WISE (can transfer to peso account, gives the highest conversion in peso, maintains accounts in Philippine banks to reduce global transfer costs).
You should consider adding ‘Bank of Commerce’ to the list. They are the most foreigner-friendly bank of all the Phils banks.
Hi Ron, thanks a lot for your helpful tip. Does Bank of Commerce also offer Direct Deposit? Or do you do the regular money transfer from your US bank to Bank of Commerce for your US pension?
Hi my son is currently receiving his Social Security benefits and we’re in the Philippines. My son is still a minor so i am his ITF for his account..his current bank is BPI and we are moving in the province next month but sad to say we have no BPI in the City Only PNB my question is do i need to ask Form from SSA for a new account to PNB? I am still confused tho.. please help what to do!!
Hi Kayjambo, yes, you need to notify SSA thru the Federal Benefits Unit, US Embassy Manila. Phone: 632-5301-2000, Fax: 632-8708-9714 or 632-8708-9723, Email: FBU.Manila@ssa.gov. Or you can visit the nearest PNB branch and ask about their Direct Deposit account and your need to move your son’s BPI pension account to PNB. Bring any proof of your son’s pension and birth cert (usually they require this for ITF accounts). Do not close his BPI pension account until the PNB account has been credited with pension. This is the latest Direct Deposit form I’ve seen on the SSA website, examine it.
Did Social Security change the rules?
Previously I was told that U.S. social security pension payments could not be made to FOREIGN banks. I am reading based on your website it is allowed?
This also applies to my U.S. military pension and my civil service pension as well.
Is that correct?
For the past 10 years I have been having my pensions deposited in a Chase account in the U.S., and the funds wired to my China Bank account in the Philippines.
Thank you for your assistance.
Hi Owen, I don’t think so. Only in a few countries like Cuba are US SS pension payments can not be made. There’s a list of countries where direct deposit to foreign banks can be made. Your payment style is good since you’re maintaining a US account (enables flexibility in your allocation, payments to US billers, etc.) and if your China Bank account is a regular account, you have a debit card and you can make ATM withdrawals. Banks here with Direct Deposit service do not issue atm cards; they issue passbooks only, hence withdrawals are only over the counter.
Thank you very much for your reply.
Since I have no U.S. obligations – I would prefer to have my social security, military retirement pensions and civil service pension all deposited into a Philippine Bank, since I have regular dealings with my local bank (here in the Philippines).
Is it possible to set up a bank account IN the Philippines for U.S. direct deposit or must the direct deposit be made into a Philippine bank IN the U.S.?
According to DFAS, they do not issue direct deposits into Philippines bank for military pensions. Why? I don’t know. That is what it says on their webpage.
Hi John, thanks for your message. Yes, I saw their webpage, and Philippines is not included in the IDD list. But in the SSA list, the Phils is already included. Nevertheless, during the years the Phils was excluded, and probably up to now for US federal agencies that still exclude the Phils for IDD, banks here like PNB, BPI, BDO, Metrobank and Landbank use their US branches or affiliates in their Direct Deposit program, meaning the pensions are first deposited to the US branches or partner US banks, and forwarded to Philippine banks.
I have a Bank of America in Washington State. Can I used my Bank of America for an online bank to bank transfer to RCBC bank? Is there any transaction fee?
Hi Maria, most likely your BOA online banking has a Wire Transfer feature. It could be named International Fund Transfer. Look for it and make the transfer. Yes, most likely there’s a transfer fee. If none, most likely, RCBC will charge a fee. If you need to type in a Swift code for RCBC, it’s RCBCPHMMXXX.
I checked BOA’s website and I saw this page for instructions on how to make an international wire transfer from BOA. You hover over (but don’t click) the Transfer/Zelle tab until you see a menu pop up.
About fees, either BOA will charge an outgoing wire transfer fee, or RCBC will charge an incoming wire transfer fee, or both will charge a fee.
If the pensioner dies and there is remaining amount in its bank account (Dollar) , who can withdraw said amount if he is single. Could SSA provide the legal person and who is he…
Hi Remedios, if the US dollar bank account is in the USA, the beneficiary just needs to present to the bank his ID and the pensioner’s death certificate to withdraw the money. This is what many financial/banking advisors in the USA say online. If you’re not sure you’d written your beneficiary in your bank records, update your records in your bank asap. If this dollar account is in the Philippines, it’s more difficult. The claimant needs to present many documents to the bank, including TIN no. of pensioner. There’s a summary of BIR’s 6% estate tax on deposits here.