Bad Credit California Surety Bonds

Find out if you are able to get approved for your surety bond in California with credit issues.

Can You Get a Bond With Bad Credit in California?

It's possible to get a surety bond with bad credit; whether you can get approved depends on the type of bond you need and the severity of your credit issues.

License and permit bond approvals are based mostly on personal credit. The worse your credit situation is, the higher the risk you are to the surety company. Our agency has high risk markets for license, permit and miscellaneous bonds that are required for many different occupations. Whether you're an auto dealer or a contractor with bad credit, you'll likely be able to get approved for a surety bond with credit issues.

Surety Bonds: Top 5 Things to Know

Contract bonds for public construction projects are difficult to get approved for with bad credit. It's possible to get contract bonds such as performance bonds with credit problems, but you'll likely be limited to smaller projects. However, it's nearly impossible if to get contract bonds if you have severe credit issues such as large or past due collections or civil judgments. Read our article to learn more about your bad credit performance bond options.

Court bonds can also be hard to get approved for with bad credit depending on how severe the issues are. If you have moderate credit issues, you may still be able to get approved. However, you won't be able to get approved for court bonds if you have serious credit problems such as large collections, past dues, civil judgments, tax liens, bankruptcy or past due child support.

What Will Your Bond Cost if You Have Bad Credit?

Costs vary drastically by the specific surety bond that you need and the severity of your credit problems. Surety bond costs are a percentage of the bond amount being required of you, which is based on personal credit, and sometimes your business financials and industry experience. However, bad credit will usually raise the costs regardless of which bond type you need. Find out how getting your surety bond in California might cost more than you think.

Remember, the surety bond is a form of credit to you provided by the surety company. When you are bonded you agree to pay the surety company back for any bond claims that you trigger by not following applicable laws or operating your business unprofessionally. The surety company looks at personal credit to determine risk because they see credit issues as an indication of how you handle your financial obligations; this is why your surety bond costs will increase, or you may even be declined with significant credit issues.


Eric is an industry expert that specializes in taking complex surety concepts and explaining them in terms that make sense to the general public. He also manages the JW Surety Bonds website and works with various partners to help further educate the public on suretyship using various mediums.

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