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The Bond Line

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The Bond Line

Welcome to DBL Surety's Bond Line - Your Source For Surety Bond News!  This is where you will find important updates to various types of surety bonds, underwriting changes, and general surety bond news.  Are we missing something?  Please feel free to email us at info@dblsurety.com and let us know!


5/2/2013

Florida Senate Passes SB446 - Economic Develop Incentive Application Process Which Requires Surety Bonds Before Receiving State Incentives

The Florida Senate passed SB446 today which will require applicants seeking incentive awards through the Quick Action Closing Fund or the Innovative Incentive Program to provide a surety bond for the entire amount of award before any state funds can be disbursed.  Up to half of the surety bond premium can be paid using the incentive funds up to 3% of the total disbursed incentive(s).  The bond must remain in effect until all performance conditions are satisfied and the Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) must be notified upon cancelation or non-renewal by the surety company 45 days in advance, or 10 days in advance for nonpayment, or 20 days in advance within 90 days of the surety bond's issuance.

However, the DEO may waive the surety bond requirement if the applicant cannot obtain the surety bond or the cost of the surety bond is unreasonable.  In order for a waiver to be granted, the DEO must certify in writing to the Florida Governor, Florida Senate President, and Florida Speaker of the House of Representatives the following information:

  • An explanation stating the reasons why the applicant is unable to obtain the bond;
  • A description of the economic benefits the incentive award will generate; and
  • An evaluation of the applicant's quality and value which includes the applicant's audited financial statements.

Additionally, if granted a waiver, the applicant must provide one of the following items in lieu of the surety bond requirement:

  • An irrevocable letter of credit;
  • Cash or securities held in trust by a financial institution with a corresponding control agreement; or
  • Other collateral held by the applicant for the value of the incentive award amount.

Finally, the DEO may waive the security requirements altogether if:

  • The applicant has the financial ability to fulfill the requirements of the contract and can provide 5 years of independently audited financial statements;
  • The applicant has previously received economic development incentives and timely complied with any applicable clawback provisions; and/or
  • The DEO has determined that the waiver of the securitization requirements is in the best interest of the state.

3/14/2013

Allied Veteran’s Gambling Scandal:  Will Florida’s Game of Chance Surety Bond React or Will Sweepstakes Winners Be Left Holding the Bag?

On March 13, 2013 over 50 individuals were charged with multiple counts of gambling-related violations as a result of a multi-year sting operation.  The operation was meant to crack down on a popular new method of electronic gaming which is a similar experience to that of slot machines regularly found in Las Vegas and casino cruise lines.  However, this method of electronic gaming is not considered gambling under many state laws.

In recent years, numerous internet cafes have opened throughout the state of Florida.  The cafes offer a casino-like environment in which consumers can purchase internet time, prepaid phone cards, or other items which, in turn, enter the consumer into a sweepstakes.  This allows consumers to play games similar to slot machines on computer terminals in order to determine their winnings.  The companies who operate the internet cafes liken their sweepstakes to those offered by large companies like McDonalds, Coca Cola, etc.  The best example is that of McDonald’s Monopoly game which, through the purchase of a qualifying product (i.e. large drink, etc.), automatically enters the consumer into their sweepstakes.  The reason the aforementioned examples are not considered gambling is because the consumer is not directly paying to enter the sweepstakes but purchasing a product which automatically enters them into the sweepstakes.  Additionally, consumers can also write directly to the company offering the sweepstakes to obtain entry at no cost.

The state of Florida requires any entity wishing to operate a game of chance (i.e. sweepstakes) to submit an application, the rules/regulations of the game, and a form of financial security.  The financial security can be either proof of a trust account or a surety bond equal to the total payout of all prizes associated with the sweepstakes.  The goal of this requirement is to ensure that the internet café complies with Florida Statute 849.094 which governs game promotions in connection with the sale of consumer products or services.  These forms of security ultimately ensure a form of recourse to the consumer or state should the Florida Statute 849.094 be violated.

Florida Statute 849.094 also mentions another important provision in the very last paragraph.  This provision states that the statute does not apply to entities designated with a nonprofit status.  Since Allied Veterans of the World, Inc. enjoys a nonprofit status they are exempt from the statute and, as such, most likely did not post a surety bond.

Ultimately, winners of Allied Veterans’ sweepstakes have no guarantee that they will be paid any winnings owed to them due to Florida’s waiver of the surety bond requirement.  Their recourse is likely limited to filing a lawsuit against the nonprofit for any unpaid winnings which raises another question:  Will Florida allow these individuals to collect illegal gambling winnings?  I guess we’ll have to wait and find out.


3/13/2013

DBL Surety releases information on its newly established premium financing arrangement.  This article provides the basics on the program and can be found on Yahoo! News by clicking the link below:

Surety Bond Premium Financing: DBL Surety Announces Options Through Agency Partner


3/7/2013

DBL Surety provides an updated overview on Florida's Car Dealer Surety Bond requirement.  The article looks at recent pricing trends and describes why you may be paying more (or less) than your competitors!  You can find the article on Yahoo! News by clicking the link below:

DBL Surety Provides an Updated Overview on Pricing of Car/Motor Vehicle Dealer Surety Bonds in Today's Market


2/15/2013

DBL Surety authors a press release on Florida's $25,000 Motor Vehicle Dealer Surety Bond Requirement which describes the regulatory environment and how it affects the bonded auto dealer.  You can find the article on Yahoo! News by clicking the link below:

Florida's $25,000 Motor Vehicle Dealer Surety Bond Requirement:  What it Means to the Consumer and Independent/Franchise Auto Dealer


1/6/2013

DBL Surety authors a press release on Florida's Division 1 and 2 Contractor License Surety Bond which describes how the bond requirement creates a "Catch 22" for Florida contractors.  You can find the article on Yahoo! News by clicking the link below:

Florida CILB Division I and II License Surety Bond Requirement is Catch 22 for Contractors and Surety Bond Companies


12/18/2012

VIRGINIA PUBLIC ADJUSTERS REQUIRE $50,000 PUBLIC ADJUSTER SURETY BOND EFFECTIVE 1/1/13!

Effective January 1st, 2013, the Commonwealth of Virginia is requiring all resident and non-resident Licensed Public Adjusters to post a $50,000 Surety Bond in order to receive a public adjusters license.  This requirement, established during the 2012 General Assembly by House Bill 872 and Senate Bill 520, forces all public adjusters in the state of Virginia to obtain their public adjuster license.  These bills enacted several other pre-licensing requirements on VA public adjusters but $50,000 surety bond requirement is by far the most important.

The public adjuster surety bond must also be in favor of the Commonwealth of Virginia and issued by corporate sureties licensed by the commission.  DBL Surety has numerous appointments with licensed sureties and has created a streamlined application to assist you with the $50,000 VA public adjuster surety bond requirement.  This application allows almost any public adjuster obtain their surety bond the same day in almost all cases regardless of poor, bad, or struggling credit.  Start today by clicking here to start your application now.


As this is a new requirement we want to remind you that DBL Surety is available to answer any questions you may have regarding the new $50,000 surety bond requirement.  Please call, email us at info@dblsurety.com, or visit our $50,000 Virginia Public Adjuster Surety Bond website for more details.


11/15/2012

FREIGHT BROKER AND FORWARDER SURETY BONDS (BMC 84) EXPECTED TO INCREASE FROM $10,000 TO $75,000

The passage of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act of 2012 has raised the minimum bond amount required to obtain your property broker license from the USDOT FMCSA to $75,000 from $10,000 effective in July of 2013.  The BMC 84 Freight Forwarder / Broker Bond has been a major source of claims over the past few years for some surety companies and is considered high-risk.  However, DBL Surety can still obtain the Freight Broker and Forwarder Surety Bond (BMC 84) at a competitive rate for well-qualified applicants without posting collateral.  Less qualified applicants and those with challenged credit should expect some form of collateral and a higher rate.  Please email info@dblsurety.com, call 3863162547, or visit our dedicated Freight Broker / Forwarder Surety Bond page for more information.


11/5/2012

DBL SURETY ANNOUNCES A STREAMLINED APPLICATION FOR FLORIDA CONTRACTOR LICENSE BONDS REQUIRED FOR A SUB 660 CREDIT SCORE

DBL Surety has created a streamlined application for Florida contractors who are required to post the Financial Stability Surety Bond to the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board.  This surety bond is a new requirement by the State of Florida of all division I and II contractors with a FICO derived credit score under 660.  The new application can be downloaded by clicking here and removes the requirement for personal financial statements and allows DBL Surety to process your Florida Contractor License Bond the same day it's received.  Please email info@dblsurety.com, call 3863162547, or visit our dedicated Division I and II Contractor License Surety Bond page for more information.


10/31/2012

DBL SURETY ANNOUNCES SIX MONTH PAYPAL FINANCING OPTION FOR CUSTOMERS

DBL Surety is proudly participating in PayPal's Buy Now Pay Later Financing Program!  This allows our customers to buy their surety bonds now and pay for them later on qualifying purchases over $99.  Please click here to learn more about this exciting new program.

July 2012

June 2012

By Bart Leek


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NEWS & UPDATES
FL Motor Vehicle Dealer Bonds Set to Expire
04/28/2014
BMC84 - Time is Running Out!
11/21/2013
 
 
 
 
 
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