The Best Second Chance Banks and Credit Unions in Illinois

If you live in Illinois and have a negative ChexSystems record, opening a bank account might prove difficult. The majority of banks and credit unions in Illinois use ChexSystems to monitor bank accounts state-wide.

If you’ve struggled with excessive non-sufficient funds (“NSF”) charges or haven’t been able to pay excessive bank fees, this throws up a red flag when you try to apply for an account at another bank or credit union. Worse, ChexSystems keeps this information for five years! That’s a long time without a bank account.

But there is a way you can get a new checking account. Look for banks and credit unions who don’t use ChexSystems or who offer so called second chance checking accounts. Both options offer you a strong opportunity to get a new account.

CheckingExpert has helped thousands of people just like you open second chance checking accounts. We’ve selected the best accounts in Illinois for 2019 based on acceptance rates, checking account features and benefits, and the accounts with the lowest fees. Best of all, you can open an account today!

Get an account now!

Best Second Chance Bank Account of 2019

BBVA Online Checking

The BBVA Online Checking Account is our hands-down winner for the best second chance bank account for residents of Illinois.

BBVA is owned by a multi-billion dollar international bank and has won several awards for their leading products and online services. They are a fully insured FDIC member.
Sign Up Today. Takes About 3 Minutes.

Features include mobile deposits, direct deposit, online bill payment, and NO monthly or annual fees. Setting up an account is almost too easy and the smartphone app tools are some of the best we’ve reviewed. Simply stated, the BBVA Online Checking account has a combination of features no other bank can match. These include:

  • NO ChexSystems
  • NO monthly fees or service charges
  • NO monthly account balance minimums
  • NO fees at over 64,000 Allpoint® and BBVA ATMs worldwide
  • FREE award-winning mobile app (one of the best we’ve reviewed)
  • FREE Visa® debit card you can personalize with your favorite photo
  • FREE online banking, bill pay, and mobile deposits
  • FREE money transfer to and from any email or mobile phone in the U.S. via Popmoney®, Venmo®, and other instant transfer services
  • FREE dedicated team of mobile bankers you can contact via text, email, or phone
  • FREE cash back rewards for everyday debit card purchases with Simple CashBack
  • FREE unlimited check writing
  • FREE Visa Zero Liability protects you against fraudulent purchases made on your debit card

Applying is simple. The BBVA website is simple and easy to interact with. There is a $25 minimum deposit required to open an account. You’re online approval is immediate and you’ll never be required to step foot in a branch unless you want to. BBVA is one of the most friendly banks for those who need a second chance at a checking account. The entire process from start to finish takes about 3 minutes.

b-lewis-bbva-testimonialFor anyone interested, I signed up for a BBVA Bank checking account. I have been using the new checking account, debit card, online website, direct deposit, and customer service for over a month now. I have to say I am genuinely impressed with everything they have done with me and my account.

So far it seems like the ideal bank.

B. Lewis, BBVA Customer
Open a BBVA Online account today!

The Runners Up: List of the Best Second Chance Banks and Credit Unions in Illinois

We’ve surveyed banks and credit unions across Illinois to find local, regional, or national financial institutions that offer “Second Chance Bank Accounts” or what some banks call Fresh Start Checking, Opportunity Checking, or New Start Checking.

Most of these institutions use ChexSystems or EWS, but are willing to look at opening these kinds of accounts on a case-by-case basis. Many times, they require a personal visit to a branch and may offer accounts that come with monthly fees or minimum balance requirements. While not as easy and fee-free as the BBVA Online Checking account, they do offer you an alternative.

Financial InstitutionProduct
BBVA  (Our Top Pick)Online Checking
Chime Bank  (Our Runner Up)Chime Bank Checking & Savings Account
Catholic & Community Credit UnionRebound Checking
Corporate America Family Credit UnionFresh Start Checking
Fifth Third BankExpress Banking
First American BankFresh Start Checking
First Eagle BankFresh Start Checking
First National Bank and Trust CompanyRenew Checking
GenFed FinancialClean Start Checking
Great Lakes Credit UnionFresh Start Checking
First Financial BankCLEANslate Checking
Marquette BankReStart Checking
PNC BankFoundation Checking
Prairieland Federal Credit UnionNot Your Normal Checking2
Rock Valley Credit UnionBasic Checking
Staley Credit UnionRenew Checking
Wells FargoOpportunity Package
Woodforest National BankSecond Chance Checking

Did we leave your financial institution off this list? Has there been a change in any of the listings? Please let us know.