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Check the validity of an
International Bank Account Number

IBAN stands for International Bank Account Number and is always used in conjunction with a Bank Identifier Code (BIC).

IBAN is an initiative being driven by the European Commission and banks across Europe to introduce a standard account number format for use with cross border payments in Europe.

Check the validity of an IBAN

The IBAN Checker can check the format of an IBAN (International Bank Account Number) that originates from a member or joining country of the EU or the EEA, plus Switzerland.

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What is an IBAN?

IBAN stands for International Bank Account Number and is always used in conjunction with a Bank Identifier Code (BIC).

From 1 January 2007, banks sending euro intra-European Union (EU)/European Economic Area (EEA) cross-border customer credit transfers will exclusively use IBAN & BIC as beneficiary's account identifier and bank routing designation. Banks receiving euro intra-EU/EEA cross-border customer credit transfers with other identification are entitled to reject or return them as a matter of normal practice. The latter does not apply to banks receiving such payments through their national clearing system.

In practical terms, this means that IBAN & BIC must be used to identify the beneficiary's account on all cross-border payments within the EU / EEA.

Failure to provide this information, is likely to, as a minimum result in additional costs being incurred by customers together with delay in processing, and worst case, from 1 January 2007, the payment could be rejected.

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IBAN - What does an IBAN look like?

The IBAN is a series of alphanumeric characters that uniquely identifies an account held at a bank. Most countries have standard account numbering systems. For example, in the UK, an account number can be specified by a bank code, a branch sort code and an 8-digit account number.

An IBAN is not replacing the national numbering systems. It is a way of representing national account numbers in an internationally recognised standard format.

Example of a UK IBAN

Country CodeCheck DigitsBank CodeSort CodeAccount No.

You should not attempt to create your own IBAN or a beneficiary's IBAN from account details held. Please contact your Branch or Relationship Manager if you cannot locate your own IBAN.

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Electronic and printed forms of an IBAN

When an IBAN is printed in paper form, for example on an invoice, the IBAN may be split into groups of four characters to make it easier to read. When an IBAN is processed electronically it must not contain blank spaces and must not include the word 'IBAN'.

Any IBAN provided to the Bank should be in the electronic format, and should not contain the word 'IBAN'.

Paper form : GB99 RBOS 1234 56 12 3456 78
Electronic form : GB99RBOS12345612345678

Examples of other European IBANs

European IBANs
Andorra AD12 001 2030 2003 5910 0100 Italy IT40 S054 2811 1010 0000 0123
Austria AT61 1904 3002 3457 3201 Latvia LV80 BANK 0000 4351 95001
Belgium BE62 5100 0754 7061 Lithuania LT12 1000 0111 0100 1000
Bulgaria BG80 BNBG 9661 1020 3456 78 Luxembourg LU28 0019 4006 4475 0000
Cyprus CY17 0020 0128 0000 0012 0052 760 Netherlands NL91 ABNA 0417 1643 00
Czech Republic CZ65 0800 1920 0041 5399 Norway NO93 8601 1117 947
Denmark DK50 0040 0440 1162 43 Poland PL60 1020 1026 0000 0422 7020 111
Estonia EE38 2200 2210 2014 5685 Portugal PT50 0002 0123 1234 5678 9015 4
Finland FI21 1234 5600 0007 85 Romania RO49 AAAA 1B31 0075 9384 0000
France FR14 2004 1010 0505 0001 3N02 606 Slovak Republic SK31 1200 0000 1987 4263
Germany DE89 3704 0044 0532 01300 00 Slovenia SI56 1910 0000 0123 438
Gibraltar G175 NWBK 0000 0000 7099 453 Spain ES07 0012 0345 0300 0006 7890
Greece GR16 0110 1250 0000 0001 2300 695 Sweden SE35 5000 0000 0549 1000 0003
Hungary U42 1177 3016 1111 1018 0000 Switzerland CH93 0076 2011 6238 5295 7
Iceland IS14 0159 2600 7654 5510 7303 39 United Kingdom GB29 RBOS 6016 1331 92680
Ireland IE29 AIBK 9311 5212 3456 78

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IBAN - How do IBANs work

IBANs are derived from the customer's existing Sterling and/or currency account numbers. Customers should ensure that their IBAN & BIC are specified on their international invoices, i.e. instead of quoting account numbers and branch detail for cross-border payments within the EU / EEA, customers MUST quote their IBAN & BIC.

When a customer wants to make a cross-border payment, the customer will ask their bank to pay, quoting the IBAN and BIC provided by the beneficiary. The sending bank will have confidence in the IBAN after it passes the validity check. A customer should use only the IBAN & BIC to identify an account. Additional information such as bank / branch codes or account numbers should not be provided.

The beneficiary bank will recognise the payment as destined for that country from its country code. It extracts the domestic account number from the IBAN and uses it to pay the funds to the beneficiary's account.

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IBAN & BIC - Questions and Answers

What is an IBAN?

IBAN is an acronym, which stands for International Bank Account Number. It is a standard way of uniquely identifying an account for the purpose of improving the efficiency and speed of cross border payments. IBANs have been developed by the European Committee for Banking Standards (ECBS) and the International Standards Organisation (ISO) who have published an internationally agreed standard (ISO 13616:1997). This standard has since been updated for EU purposes in EBS204.

What is a BIC?

A BIC is an acronym, which stands for Bank Identifier Code. It can be used to identify your bank, when receiving payments. You may already quote your BIC on your invoices or payments to your account. The BIC can be either 8 or 11 digits in length, and the Royal Bank of Scotland BICs are shown below as examples:


RBOSGB2L - (8 Digits)
RBOSGB2LXXX - (11 Digits)

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IBAN - Further information

For further information please visit the RBS website.

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