How to Get Bonded in Tennessee

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Some projects and endeavors in Tennessee -- namely construction projects for federal, state or local government agencies -- require you to purchase an insurance called a surety bond. A surety bond is a promise to pay a set amount if you, the bonded person, don't meet your obligations in a project. Tennessee, like all other states, offers opportunities to be bonded.

Satisfy the bond requirements of the party requesting that you get the bond, also known as the obligee. The obligee will want the bond to be worth a certain amount of money. Another requirement will be language regarding circumstances under which the bond will be paid if there is a breach of requirements. If you, the principal on the bond, violate your agreement with the obligee, the surety company will pay the obligee and will require you to pay the bond's entire amount plus legal costs.

Find a Tennessee bond provider. The best place to check first is with a local insurance agency. You may get a discounted premium if you buy a bond from a company that already carries your homeowners or automobile insurance. Not every insurance company can issue surety bonds, but your insurance agent should be able to refer you to another company or you can search for alternatives online.

Complete the application required by the Tennessee surety company. For you to be bonded, the bonding company must first approve you. You may have to provide other documentation the bonding company requires to help it determine your risk factor. You may be required to put up collateral as part of the bond.

Pay the premium for the bond. The premium amount will depend on the Tennessee bond's face value and on what collateral you have provided. The surety company will require that you sign an indemnity agreement, which says you will pay back the bond's face value to the surety company if the obligee collects a claim on it.

Endorse the bond and give it to the obligee. Once you have completed this step, you are bonded in the state of Tennessee.


  • Start this process as early as possible. Getting a bond can be time-consuming and you should be bonded by your obligee's deadline.


  • Never lie or falsify information to become bonded. Tennessee law contains penalties for fraud.



About the Author

Monika Weise has been a writer of both fiction and nonfiction since 1988. Her diverse experience includes publishing fiction in "Secrets" magazine, writing plays for the Live Wires acting group and creating manuals for area businesses. Weise is working toward a Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis.

Photo Credits

  • Keith Brofsky/Photodisc/Getty Images