A surety permits the principal to make changes to the surety bond. The principal can have an information updated, corrected, or modified even if the bond is still in effect.
Let’s say, for example, you acquired a Certified Self-Insurance Liabilities Bond in October of 2015. Since a Certified Self-Insurance Liabilities Bond is a continuous bond, the bond will remain in full force until canceled.
But by March of 2016, you decided to change your business’ structure – from partnership to a Limited Liability Company (LLC).
So you contact your surety bond provider to have your bond amended. Instead of obtaining a new bond, the surety asked you to fill out a bond rider request form.
What is a Surety Bond Rider?
Even though the photo above is a guy riding a motorcycle, a surety bond rider is not that.
A surety bond rider is simply a way of modifying or updating information on an existing bond.
Maybe not as cool as the guy on the bike, but it is just as important.
A surety bond rider is also known as the consent of surety.
Now bear in mind that there is only certain information that can be changed. Changes that are not included in the following riders require the bond to be rewritten
Changing the name of the principal of the bond (your name or your business’ name)
Changing the address of the principal (your address or your business’ address)
A change in your business’ structure
An increase or decrease in your bond amount
Adding a tradename
Changing the term of the bond
Changing the effective date of the bond
Changing the bond’s number
Modifying errors in the original surety bond
Your surety will issue a rider using its own form. Some Obligees (to whom the bond is furnished), however, will require you to use their own surety bond rider forms.
In order to avoid any mistakes, the principal must verify first with the Obligee which surety bond rider form must be used.
Please keep in mind that an underwriting approval is required when changing the name of the principal riders. A new General Agreement of Indemnity is required as well. This must be executed before executing the rider.
Underwriting approval is also required when the request is for an increase in the rider.
When it comes to a decrease in the rider, an “accepted” copy from an obligee is necessary. The obligee must state that it has received and agreed to the decrease in the surety’s liabilities.
Can an obligee request to have a bond modified?
Yes, an obligee can have a bond modified as well.
Let’s take the case of the Certified Self-Insurance Liabilities Bond again as an example.
The Commissioner of the Division of Workers’ Compensation of the Texas Department of Insurance (Obligee) informed the Certified Self-Insurer (Principal) that the penal sum of the bond should be increased.
The principal then informs the surety of the request and asks the surety for his bond to be modified.
In this case, the Division of Workers’ Compensation of the Texas Department of Insurance requires the principal to use their own surety bond rider form (below).
Before the surety bond rider form is attached to the original bond, an attorney-in-fact or an authorized representative must sign the form. The company’s seal must be affixed to the rider form as well.
In some cases, the obligee requires that the principal uses a different ink color when signing the forms in order to differentiate it from the original bond.
Witness attestations are required for bond riders. The corporate secretaries of the principal and the surety must bear witness to the signing of the forms and validate its content.
Whatever the change may be, it is the duty of the principal to request for a surety bond rider. As much as possible, do not come too close to a deadline when requesting for a rider because there may be some factors that may delay the rider’s issuance.
In order to avoid any problems, the principal must have a rider executed by a surety immediately.
Do you have any questions about modifying a bond or obtaining a bond? Fill out our contact form. We’ll get back to you immediately.