SFAA’s Bill to Address Attorneys’ Fees Awards in Bond Claims Considered but not Enacted

SFAA’s Bill to Address Attorneys’ Fees Awards in Bond Claims Considered but not Enacted 

Washington SB 6428/HB 2852 would have placed reasonable limits on the award of attorney fees’ against sureties. The bill provided that the rights granted under current procurement law would have been the exclusive remedy for recovering attorneys' fee for all disputes, including but not limited to coverage disputes involving a performance or payment bond required under the Little Miller Act. The legislation stalled in the House and died at the end of the session since bills do not carry over to 2019 in Washington.

Members should visit Government Relations / General Info (Members) for more information.


Draft Meeting Minutes posted

Writing

Draft Minutes from the following
recent meetings have been posted for Members:

Members should navigate to the Board and Committees section of the website for for additional information
about
SFAA Board and Advisory Committees.


SFAA’s Bill in Indiana to Require Bonding in P3s Goes to Study

SFAA’s Bill in Indiana to Require Bonding in P3s Goes to Study

Indiana HB 1301 would direct the Legislative Council to form an interim study committee to examine requiring performance and payment bonds for future public private partnership (P3) projects for the three P3 laws that SFAA sought to amend. As introduced, HB 1301 contained the amendments that SFAA drafted to require 100% bonds in all three P3 laws. The bill was amended twice to reduce the bond requirements from 100% to 50% and then down to 25% before it was amended again to send the issue to another study committee. HB 1301 has been sent to the Governor. There also are study provisions on bonding for any kind of P3 project in HB 1374 that the Governor has signed. HB 1374 also revises the existing law for the Indiana Finance Authority.

Members should visit Government Relations / General Info (Members) for more information.


SFAA Objects to Proposed Montana Rules Eliminating Aggregate Liability Provision for Public Adjuster

SFAA Objects to Proposed Montana Rules Eliminating Aggregate Liability Provision for Public Adjusters’ Bond 

SFAA advised against a proposed rule from the Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance that would delete a provision limiting the surety’s aggregate liability to the bond amount for the bond required from public adjusters. SFAA noted that the proposed rules could affect the bond’s availability by increasing the surety’s financial exposure. The proposed rules state that the intent of the changes is to remove superfluous language without changing the meaning of the rule. Our comments noted that eliminating the limit on the surety’s aggregate liability could result in a material, unintended change as the statute does not limit the surety’s aggregate liability.

Members should visit Government Relations / General Info (Members) for more information.


SFAA Submits Recommendations on Oregon Mortgage Servicers License Bond Rules

SFAA Submits Recommendations on Oregon Mortgage Servicers License Bond Rules 

SFAA made recommendations on the claims provisions to the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services concerning proposed rules for bonding mortgage loan servicers. The rules would require the bond to remain in place for five years after the mortgage servicer ceases to be licensed in the State. Direct actions also are permitted on the bond and claims must be filed before the bond expires. SFAA recommended that two or three years for the limitations period for claims would be more workable. SFAA also recommended that the limitations period to take action on the bond should begin when the surety cancels the bond or when the servicer ceases to be licensed, whichever occurs earlier. We recommended that the rules be clarified so that the claimant has a period of time after the bond is cancelled or the license period ends to make a claim, and that the claims period is not long that that it increases uncertainty for the surety, which could impact the availability of the bond.

The bond or letter of credit would have to be in an amount ranging from $50,000 to $200,000, based on the mortgage servicer's total unpaid principal balance of residential mortgage loans in Oregon. SFAA did not comment on the bond amount specifically, but noted that a higher bond amount would require the bond principal to have greater financial resources based on the surety’s underwriting process.

Members should visit Government Relations / General Info (Members) for more information.