The freight broker bond increase to $75,000 is upon us. The FMCSA stated they are allowing for a 60 day compliance window due to the near certain log jam of filings that will be occurring.
Some are encouraging brokers to use this 60 day window to hold off on getting their bond. In lieu of a $75K bond, some bond markets are offering a “patch” product to allow brokers to wait until the last possible day to obtain a bond.
These “patches” are simply short term bond policies of $10K that coincide with the FMCSA extended compliance window. Bonding companies throughout the country have sent out cancellation notices on the old $10K bonds, making them inactive by 10/1. These “patch” products put a $10K instrument in place from 10/1 to 12/1.
Some brokers may be intrigued by these “patches”, especially those that are still hopeful that the $75K bond requirement will be repealed. However, the markets we’ve seen offering these patches have high pricing, starting at $3,000 per year. This is 312% higher than the lowest price we offer and 61% higher than what the majority of brokers are being quoted through our program.
Due to the high volume we’re experiencing, we have decided not to offer a “patch” product, as we feel it will do more harm than good for our clients.
We understand that one size does not fit all and some might feel a “patch” offering is a good fit for them. Here are some questions that you need to ask on “patch” offers to ensure you don’t needlessly spend more.
Can I increase the $10K “patch” policy to $75K at the same rate?
If they are unwilling to increase the policy it will be wasted money should the $75K requirement stand, as the FMCSA does not allow partial or combined securities at this time. In other words, you would have to purchase an additional $75K bond that covers the same 60 day term.
If I purchase a “patch”, am I required to obtain my $75K bond from you?
No one can force you to purchase the $75K bond from them, but what they can do is refuse to increase your “patch” policy to $75K or only do so if you purchase a $75K bond from them as well. Unfortunately, this would limit the brokers choices: 1) Pay thousands more and make use of the “patch” term. 2) Purchase a $75K bond effective 10/1 overlapping the $10K “patch” term.
If I purchase a $75K bond elsewhere, will you still increase my $10K “patch” policy to $75K?
If the answer to this one is yes, then the “patch” product will serve it’s purpose and not be horribly costly to you, as you can purchase a $75K bond with an effective date of 12/1 without restrictions. This allows you to make use of the “patch” without limiting your options.
Some are interpreting that “patch” products will keep brokers in compliance due to the 60 day window. However, we interpret the window as a 60 day period to prove compliance with a $75K bond, effective 10/1; not an extra 60 days to only have $10K in place. Equally as important, many carriers of the industry are requiring a $75K bond as of 10/1, which we believe makes the window a moot point.
It is our belief that “patch” products are more beneficial to agents sales numbers than the brokers purchasing them. The proof is in the numbers. If you are entertaining the idea of a “patch”, be sure to get all of the details as to what happens after the 60 day period and compare it to our program. We’re certain, it will be clear as day.
JW Surety Bonds has an exclusive bond program for the $75,000 freight broker bond available now:
• A+ rated, Treasury-listed surety
• No collateral
• Lowest rates in the country
• Approvals regardless of credit strength
• 99.9% approval rate
Be prepared for the October 1 deadline. Apply directly on our website to get an instant approval.