Surety Bonds are for consumer protection that coincides with professional services and licenses. Surety bonds are one of the oldest forms of insurance dating back thousands of years. Surety bonds are more of a reverse insurance policy protecting the consumer not the principal of the surety bond.
Commercial Insurance protects your business from being sued. Most common Commercial Insurance such as general liability protects your business for injury or property damage such as a fire or a customer that slips on a wet floor. There are many different forms of commercial insurance that can protect your company; also there are many endorsements you can purchase to give you and your business peace of mind. With Surety bonds there are no special endorsements that you can buy to protect your business. The surety bond does not protect you or your company but the consumer or the obligee in case of fraud or whatever underlining statue referenced in the surety bond form.
Insurance indemnifies the policy holder and protects your business in the event of insurance claim. A good example of this is D & O Insurance. D & O Insurance protects the personal assets as well as your spouse's assets from lawsuits steaming from wrongful termination, sexual harassment, discrimination based on sex, age race or age. There are no Surety bonds that would cover this.
Surety Bonds indemnify the surety company and protects the consumer or oblige in the event of a claim. In Insurance you pay an deductible and the insurance company covers the rest of the claim up to the policy limits. Also you usually have the option to obtain a higher deducible to obtain a lower premium for your policy. With Surety bonds you do not have any option to have a lower or higher deductible to lower or raise the premium; there are no deductibles. You must also pay the Surety Company back for any claim that was spent by the surety company.
Surety bonds a required by law to obtain a license or to perform government contracts. The government requires performance bond to guarantee that the money for a project will be completed and tax payers will protected. While some Commercial insurance products are required by law such as general liability or workmen's comp, they are not usually required to obtain a license.
Insurance policies limits can be lowered or raised where surety bond amounts are predetermined by the State or Federal Government and the principal cannot change them. Bonds are underwritten similar to a loan where insurance policies are not. Indemnification for insurance policies restore the principal to the financial condition they where in before the time of the loss. Indemnification for the insured in surety bonds restore the surety company to the financial position it was once in before the loss occurred.
I hope this has clarified the vast differences of these two different forms of insurance.
Surety Bond information is hard to come by I hope this has help you with the Surety Bond Process. You can learn more about Insurance and Surety Bond news with future articles