Various individuals employed by the government come into contact with paying out and receiving funds related to a budget. Individuals such as this, in a quasi-public/private capacity, need to have what’s called a Public Official Bond. The Public Official Bond guarantees that they are not going to abscond with any money, they are going to pay legitimate bills, and they are not going to pay anything in error. The Public Official Bond basically guarantees that they are going to handle the money that they receive according to the law.

Certain school superintendents, treasurers of various municipalities and counties throughout the US, along with employees of the sheriff’s offices and various other government entity offices, whether at the municipal, city, or state level, may need a Public Official Bond. Not all are required to be bonded but in many cases, these are needed.

If you are required to obtain a Public Official Bond, the surety is generally going to run a credit check on bond amounts up to $150,000, and will approve bonds based on a credit score of 700 or higher without additional financial disclosure. They may also look at whether or not the individual owns their own home. The reason why the surety wants an acceptable minimum credit score is that they are looking to bond somebody handling other people’s money, and want to ensure they will handle it appropriately and properly. If the bond needed is over $150,000, the surety will also require a personal financial statement from the applicant, along with the indemnity of themselves and their spouse. Another useful item will be a resume showing that the applicant has a background working in this field.

If someone has a bad credit score, it doesn’t mean they cannot get bonded, but the surety will question if they cannot manage their own finances, why would they be managing an entity’s finances? And, why would the surety guarantee it?

The surety is going to look at several factors. Just because you have a negative credit score does not mean you cannot obtain the bond, but if you do have issues, it would be best to give me a call to discuss them, and we’ll see if we can come up with a solution to help you obtain the bond. 

Neil Pedersen
15 Maiden Lane Suite #800
New York, NY 10038

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