Opening a New Account : FAQs

Yes. When completing the online application, you will first be asked to provide your residential address and there will also be an area for you to provide an alternative mailing address. You may use a business address as your mailing address but your residential address is required.

U.S. citizens and resident aliens can open an account at OptionsHouse. Non-resident aliens may not open an account at OptionsHouse.

Yes, you may authorize a limited power of attorney authorization (LPOA) on your account. By completing a LPOA form you allow a third party to trade on your account but it does not allow the LPOA to perform other functions in your account such as transferring money or changing personal information.

Yes. When completing the account application, you will need to provide the name, residential address, social security number, date of birth and employment information for all applicants.

When completing the account application, you will need to provide the name, residential address, social security number, date of birth and employment information for all applicants. OptionsHouse will inform you if any additional information is needed via email before account approval.

OptionsHouse is required (pursuant to the USA PATRIOT Act and industry regulations) to verify the identity of our clients including name, date of birth, social security number and residential address. In order to open an entity account, there must be a primary account holder and all authorized officers of the entity must pass this verification process.

For servicemen and women stationed overseas, you may apply for an account using your APO/FPO address on the application. You will need to provide a copy of your military orders for address verification as well as a government issued photo ID. (note: please do NOT send us your military ID).

At this time, OptionsHouse is only registered to conduct business in the United States. Due to differing tax implications and foreign securities regulations, we are not able to maintain accounts for customers residing outside of the United States on a long-term or permanent basis. Nor are we able to open accounts for entity accounts where the entity is registered outside the US OR where any member resides outside of the United States.

OptionsHouse is required (pursuant to the USA PATRIOT Act and industry regulations) to verify the identity of our clients including their name, date of birth, social security number and residential address. OptionsHouse uses a soft credit check from a third party provider in order to verify personal information about our potential customers. In order to open an account with all potential account holders must pass this verification process. If the soft credit check does not verify the required information, requires additional documents in order to verify the information.

General / Miscellaneous

Pursuant to industry regulations and the USA PATRIOT Act, OptionsHouse is required to obtain certain information from our clients, including employment information.

Pursuant to industry regulations and the USA PATRIOT Act, OptionsHouse is required to obtain certain information from our clients, including income sources.

Yes, you may fax your documents to us at 312-284-4775. Please ensure you list your account number on the documents that you are sending. It is also always best to use a fax coversheet with your name and account number on it.

OptionsHouse is required (pursuant to the USA PATRIOT Act and industry regulations) to verify the identity of our clients, including residential address. In order to open an account with OptionsHouse, all account holders must pass this verification process. If we are unable to verify a residential address, we may not be able to open your account.

Application Questions

An email will be sent to your email address once the account is opened and approved at OptionsHouse.

Unfortunately, due to security concerns we cannot email you a copy of your application, but we can mail you a copy of the application at your address of record.

Unfortunately, we cannot change the type of account once the online application has been completed. If you chose the wrong account type, please log-in online, and apply for the correct account type by filling out a new application.

Verifying Your Identity

OptionsHouse uses a soft credit check from a third party provider in order to verify public personal information about our potential customers. In order to open an account with OptionsHouse, all potential account holders must pass this verification process. If we are unable to verify certain information, additional documents may be requested.

The only documents we will accept are:

  • Non-Expired State issued ID showing the current address (cannot be issued after the date of application)
  • Utility bill (gas, electric or cable) – complete bill (needs to be less than 60 days old)
  • Lease or mortgage statement – complete document, fully executed (signed)
  • Renter’s or Homeowner’s Insurance Statement – complete statement

We will NOT accept: cellular phone bills, credit card or bank statements, vehicle registration or voter ID cards.

If you live with your parents, we need a copy of your birth certificate along with one of the following documents in your parent’s name:

    • Non-Expired State issued ID showing the current address (cannot be issued after the date of application)
    • Utility bill (gas, electric or cable) – complete bill (needs to be less than 60 days old)
    • Lease or mortgage statement – complete document, fully executed (signed)
    • Renter’s or Homeowner’s Insurance Statement – complete statement

If you live with your spouse, we need a copy of your marriage certificate along with one of the following in your spouse’s name:

  • Non-Expired State issued ID showing the current address (cannot be issued after the date of application)
  • Utility bill (gas, electric or cable) – complete bill (needs to be less than 60 days old)
  • Lease or mortgage statement – complete document, fully executed (signed)
  • Renter’s or Homeowner’s Insurance Statement – complete statement

If your driver’s license was issued after the application was completed, we will require an additional document in order to verify your address. Documents we will accept for this verification are:

  • Utility bill (gas, electric or cable) – complete bill (needs to be less than 60 days old)
  • Lease or mortgage statement – complete document, fully executed (signed)
  • Renter’s or Homeowner’s Insurance Statement – complete statement

If you are living on a college campus, there are two options to verify your address:

    • Send us a letter from your college housing office confirming your address and the dates you are residing in campus housing

OR

  • We can make the college address your mailing address and change your residential address to your permanent address.

For servicemen and women stationed overseas, you may apply for an account using your APO/FPO address on the application. You will need to provide a copy of your military orders for address verification as well as a government issued photo ID. (note: please do NOT send us your military ID).

In order to verify your date of birth, please provide one of the following:

  • Non-Expired State issued ID
  • A copy of your passport
  • A copy of your birth certificate

In order to verify your social security number, please provide one of the following:

    • A copy of your social security card
    • A letter from the IRS verifying your number
    • A complete, signed copy of a professionally prepared tax return
    • A copy of your Medicare Card
    • A copy of your selective service card

We will NOT accept: a W-2, a W-9, a self-prepared tax return, a social security statement, or a copy of your passport.

OptionsHouse is required (pursuant to the USA PATRIOT Act and industry regulations) to verify the identity of our clients including your name, date of birth, social security number and residential address. OptionsHouse uses a soft credit check from a third party provider in order to verify personal information about our potential customers. In order to open an account with OptionsHouse, all potential account holders must pass this verification process. If the soft credit check does not verify the required pieces of information, OptionsHouse requires documents that can verify the information.

U.S. citizens and resident aliens can open an account at OptionsHouse. Non-resident aliens may not open an account at OptionsHouse. Residents of the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Hong Kong India are eligible to apply for an International account type.

Your account should be opened under your legal name at the time you complete the account application. If you have recently gotten married and have not legally changed your name, please apply for the account under your maiden name. If you have legally changed your name, we may ask you to provide a copy of the court issued documents showing the name change.

OptionsHouse uses a soft credit check from a third party provider in order to verify personal information about our potential customers. In order to open an account with OptionsHouse, all potential account holders must pass this verification process.

Additional Paperwork

If you are employed by a FINRA or exchange member, OptionsHouse must receive a FINRA 3050/NYSE 407 letter from your employer’s compliance officer prior to the account being opened. Please provide your compliance officer’s name, email address and phone number on your application and we will contact your compliance officer to obtain the FINRA 3050/NYSE 407 letter. Alternatively, you may obtain the letter from your compliance officer and submit it to us via fax or email.

A spouse’s signature is required on any IRA Simplifier in which they are not the 100% primary beneficiary if the account holder lives in a community property state. This signature serves as the spouse’s acknowledgment that they are not the 100% primary beneficiary. Community property states are: Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin. Customers residing outside of these states are not required to have their spouse sign this form.

OptionsHouse offers a variety of entity accounts, each with different paperwork requirements. Please see the list below for the documents that are required for all entity accounts. (Please note, additional documents verifying the identity of managers/members may be required in addition to the documents listed below.)

Corporate Account

  • Corporate Account Agreement
  • Articles of Incorporation
  • W9
  • IRS form SS-4

LLC Account

  • LLC Agreement
  • Articles of Organization
  • W9
  • IRS form SS-4

Partnership Agreement

  • Partnership Agreement

Trust Account

  • Trustee Certification

Sole Ownership Account

  • Affidavit of Sole Ownership

Investment Club Account

  • Investment Club Account Agreement
  • IRS form SS4

Beneficiary IRA

  • Certified (Original) Copy of Death Certificate
  • Certified Letter of Testamentary or other Court Certified instructions dated with the last 65 days
  • Affidavit of Domicile
  • Cash and/or Security Journal Request Form
  • Letter of Instruction how to distribute the funds once moved from the deceased account

Estate Account:

  • Certified (Original) Copy of Death Certificate
  • Certified Letter of Testamentary or other Court Certified instructions dated with the last 65 days
  • Affidavit of Domicile
  • Cash and/or Security Journal Request Form
  • Letter of Instruction how to distribute the funds once moved from the deceased account

If you would like to change your IRA beneficiaries, an IRA Change of Beneficiary Designation Form is required. Please complete the form and fax to 312-284-4775.

If you would like to add a beneficiary on a non-IRA account, please complete a Transfer on Death Form and fax to 312-284-4775.

After Your Account Has Been Opened

An email will be sent to your email address once the account is opened and approved at OptionsHouse.

OptionsHouse considers several factors when assigning a trading level, which includes (but is not limited to) financial status, investment objectives and trading experience.

Yes, you may authorize a limited power of attorney authorization (LPOA) on your account. By completing a LPOA form you allow a third party to trade on your account but it does not allow the LPOA to perform other functions in your account such as transferring money or changing personal information.

To request a change in trading level, send an email to [email protected]. Include your name, the last four digits of your social security number, your date of birth, your account number and the trading strategies you are applying for. The email must come from the email address on file with OptionsHouse. Listed below are the trading levels currently offered at OptionsHouse.

  • Level 1: Buy Stock, Covered Calls, Protected Puts, Cash Covered Puts, Purchase Options, European Cash Settled Spreads
  • Level 3: Debit and Credit Spreads (American style)
  • Level 6: Uncovered Options

OptionsHouse will not be able to change your account from margin to cash at this time.

The following are OptionsHouse trading levels:

  • Level 1: Buy Stock, Covered Calls, Protected Puts, Cash Covered Puts, Purchase Options, European Cash Settled Spreads
  • Level 3: Debit and Credit Spreads (American style)
  • Level 6: Uncovered Options