When you're considering the start of a new business, such as an auto dealership, there are many different steps you'll need to take, and many different requirements you'll need to meet. When it comes to obtaining your Florida auto dealers license, there are numerous specifics, and one of the most essential will be obtaining the proper Florida dealer bond insurance.
Use this guide to find the 4 most important things to know about Florida motor vehicle dealer surety bonds, to make sure you handle everything you need in the right way.
1. Dealer Bonds Are Always Required:
There are 10 different Florida auto dealers license types according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, but regardless of which type you have or need, you will need to have Florida dealer bond insurance in place. That requirement remains consistent, however, other factors as described below will differ.
2. Different Amounts:
Depending on the type of license you are operating under, you'll need Florida motor vehicle dealer surety bonds in different amounts. All motor vehicle dealers in the state need a $25,000 bond, for example. However, recreational vehicle dealers only need a $10,000 surety bond.
Additionally, you'll also have the option to pursue a line of credit in the same amount, as opposed to traditional Florida dealer bond insurance. This is a less common option though and often places more potential burden on the business owner. It may be easier for you to obtain though, depending on credit statuses and so forth.
3. Deadlines and Renewals:
In the state of Florida, motor vehicle dealer surety bonds are set to expire annually. However, different license types will have different expiration dates, so it's important not to make any assumptions.
For example, Independent Dealers, who have a VI license and sell only used vehicles, have an expiration date of April 30. However, Franchise Dealers with VF licensing, who can sell both new and used cars, have a December 31 expiration. Recreational vehicle dealers, both RV and RU licensing, expire on September 30.
These differing dates are important to keep in mind, because if you miss your renewal date, you can unknowingly be committing a serious crime, and face major consequences. The dates are also different so as to reduce processing time across the year instead of having one major rush.
4. Other Requirements are Necessary:
Florida dealer bond insurance is one of the primary requirements for licensure. However, it's certainly not the only one. You'll also need proper garage liability insurance with the correct established minimums, and you'll need to ensure you file the right HSMV paperwork with the right fees, get a Federal employer ID number, get fingerprinted, undergo pre-licensing training, and more.
Hopefully by now you've learned more about Florida motor vehicle dealer surety bonds, and the different needs and requirements, and varying steps in the process. There's a lot to sort through, but having all the information available upfront will make everything much easier and smoother.