Florida Department of Financial Services Reviews Bail Bond Surety Regulations Bail Bonds Rule Hearing

Oct 18, 2011


The Florida Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) met on October 18, 2011 to workshop proposed Rules 69B-221.100, F.A.C., entitled “Terms and Conditions of Contract; Surrender Form” and 69B-221.105, F.A.C., “Premium Charge Only Permitted.”   Both propose Rules relate to the bail bonds industry.  

The purpose of proposed Rule 69B-221.105 is to establish the terms and conditions that constitute breach of contract between of principal and a surety for a bail bond. The proposed Rule would allow for a minimum partial payment of at least 10 percent of the total premium due.  A written agreement that includes all terms, conditions and other information would be required, and a bail bond would have to be fully collateralized at the time of execution.  Proposed Rule 69B-221.100, which was not discussed during the workshop, requires Form DFS-H2-1542 (also known as the “Statement of Surrender Form”) to be completed upon the surrender of a defendant. 

In relation to proposed Rule 69B-221.105,  Dan Amato with American Surety Company testified that the minimum partial payment of 10 percent of the total premium is too low and should be 50 percent.  This way, everybody has some “skin in the game,” he explained.

Mr. Amato also stated that the bail bond should be fully collateralized at the time of execution.  The DFS officials responded that the 10 percent number was not recommended by anyone-just an arbitrary number.  However, the DFS officials did not express positivity with the 50 percent number. 

The DFS officials further explained that there are bad agents-mostly located in South Florida-who abuse the system.  Form DFS-H2-1542, they said, will allow DFS to track those agents and narrow the scope in which they operate. 

The DFS is anticipating legislation relating to Rule 69B-221.105 to be filed during the 2012 Florida Legislative Session.  The DFS officials suggested that further rulemaking should be postponed until the outcome of the anticipated bill.  According to the agents, the proposal is expected to contain language referencing the minimum partial payment of 50 percent of the total premium due.

The record will remain open for 10 days for written comments until the close of business October 28, 2011.   


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