Is there anything less interesting than a bid bond?
They may not seem too exciting, but the lowly bid bond is an integral part of our surety business. For contractors, they are often the key to acquiring new revenues. If you don’t think they are important, watch what happens when a client is waiting for one that never arrives.
As surety underwriters, we spend a great deal of effort assuring these documents are accurate, delivered on time, and we track the outcome on each one.
Everybody knows about bid bonds, right?! OK let’s see if you do…
- If you decide to not use a bid bond you ordered, you have to send it back to the surety within 48 hours
- They have an expiration date
- A bid bond precedes every performance bond
- The surety can cancel the bid bond
- The dollar value of the bid bond equals the amount of the proposal it accompanies
- The surety must know the exact dollar value of the bid bond before they will issue it
- The premium for them must be paid in advance
- They remain active for up to six months
- It is better to use a check for security than a bid bond
- The same surety that issues the bid bond must issue the performance bond
OK team, how’d you do? # of True______? # of False____?
They are all False!
- An unused bid bond has no value but it makes a great liner for your bird cage
- Never has an expiration date
- Some contracts are negotiated (no bid bond) or may require a surety capacity letter instead
- Like a performance bond, these surety instruments cannot be cancelled
- Most often the penal sum of the bid bond equals a percentage (10-20%) of the proposal amount
- Most bid bond amounts are expressed as a percentage of the proposal amount, not a dollar amount, to protect the confidentiality of the proposers bid. In such cases the exact dollar value is unknown in advance.
- Sureties are entitled to charge for them, but usually don’t
- Although not stated, most sureties consider them void after 90 days
- Wrong! If the performance bond is not produced, the check can be forfeited
- Nope! Two different sureties can be used, even if a “Consent of Surety” was issued with the bid bond.
Bonus Question: If the bid is rejected because the surety’s credentials are found to be inadequate, can this result in a bid bond claim?
Answer: Theoretically, it should not. If the bond is declared inadequate, how can it be sufficient for a claim?
When flexibility and aggressive underwriting are needed, give us a call. Find out what you missing when it comes to surety bonds.
FIA Surety is a NJ based bonding company (carrier) that has specialized in Site, Subdivision, Bid and Performance Bonds since 1979 – we’re good at it! Call us with your next one.
Steve Golia, Marketing Mgr.: 856-304-7348
First Indemnity of America Ins. Co.
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