Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)(Iowa); Overview, Contacts, Claims, Services, Ratings, Reviews, and Benefits

Surety bonds play a crucial role in the business world, providing a layer of financial protection and accountability. Among the players in this industry, Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) stands out. Let’s delve into a comprehensive overview, covering key aspects from contact details to benefits and frequently asked questions.

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Merchants Bonding Company (MBC) has been safeguarding businesses and individuals for over 90 years as a surety insurance company.

Established in 1933, MBC stands out because it’s a mutual company, owned by the very people it protects. This means MBC’s goals are the same as its customers – keeping things aligned.

Brief History

MBC started in Des Moines, Iowa, thanks to a group of business-minded folks who aimed to offer affordable surety bonds, especially to small businesses.

It didn’t take long for the company to grow, extending its range to include various bonds like contract bonds, commercial bonds, fidelity bonds, and license and permit bonds.

Mission

MBC has a clear mission – providing financial protection through surety bonds. The company is all about offering top-notch products and services at prices that compete well in the market.

Values

MBC lives by some important values:

  1. Customer Focus: Giving the best service is MBC’s priority.
  2. Integrity: MBC is committed to doing business honestly and fairly.
  3. Financial Strength: Maintaining a strong financial position is crucial for meeting obligations to customers.
  4. Innovation: MBC keeps evolving, creating new products and services to match what customers need.

Contact Details of Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

West Des Moines Corporate Office
Office Location 6700 Westown Parkway
West Des Moines, IA 50266-7754
Mailing Address P.O. Box 14498
Des Moines, IA 50306-3498
Phone 515-243-8171
Toll-Free 1-800-678-8171
Fax 515-243-3854
Email info@merchantsbonding.com

Services and Products Offered by Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) provides various surety bonds and insurance products for businesses and individuals.

Surety Bonds

Surety bonds are a type of financial guarantee that shields against losses when someone fails to meet an obligation. Merchants Bonding Company offers diverse surety bonds, such as:

  • Contract bonds: Ensuring a contractor finishes a project as per contract terms.
  • Commercial bonds: Guaranteeing a business complies with licenses, permits, or regulations.
  • Fidelity bonds: Protect businesses from losses due to employee theft or dishonesty.
  • License and permit bonds: Ensuring businesses follow license or permit terms.
Insurance Products

Apart from surety bonds, Merchants Bonding Company also provides several insurance products, including:

  • Health insurance: Aiding individuals with medical expenses.
  • Dental insurance: Assisting individuals with dental expenses.
  • Vision insurance: Supporting individuals with vision care costs.
  • Life insurance: Offering financial protection to the beneficiaries of a deceased person.
  • Disability insurance: Providing financial protection to those unable to work due to a disability.
Other Products and Services

Merchants Bonding Company extends its offerings to include:

  • Accident plans: Giving financial protection to those injured in an accident.
  • Critical illness plans: Providing financial protection to those diagnosed with a critical illness.
  • Legal assistance: Offering individuals affordable access to legal services.
  • ID theft programs: Helping individuals safeguard their identity from theft.

Getting a Quote

To receive a quote for a surety bond or insurance product from Merchants Bonding Company, you can reach out directly or contact them through an independent insurance agent.

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Premium Costs

Merchants Bonding Company (MBC) determines premium costs based on factors like bond type, amount, principal’s creditworthiness, and experience. Typically, premiums range from 1% to 5% of the bond amount.

Payment Options

For paying premiums, MBC provides various options:

  • Single payment: Pay the entire premium in one go, the most common choice.
  • Monthly installments: Spread the premium cost over several months.
  • Quarterly installments: Spread the premium cost over quarters.
  • Annual installments: Spread the premium cost over multiple years.

Discounts and Promotions

MBC extends different discounts on surety bonds:

  • Good credit discount: If you have good credit, you might get a discount on your premium.
  • Experience discount: A history of good performance on surety bonds could lead to a premium discount.
  • Multiple bond discount: Buying multiple surety bonds from MBC may make you eligible for a premium discount.

MBC also occasionally provides promotional offers, including discounts on premiums, waived application fees, or other benefits.

Process of Filing Claims with Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) makes the claims process simple and efficient. This is the process:

  1. Report the Claim: First, let Merchants Bonding Company know about your claim. You can do this online, by email, or by phone.
  2. Investigation: After getting your claim, Merchants Bonding Company assigns a claims professional. They’ll look into your claim, review the information, and might ask for more documents.
  3. Evaluation: Once the investigation is done, the claims professional assesses the claim to decide if Merchants Bonding Company should pay.
  4. Payment: If Merchants Bonding Company confirms the obligation to pay, they promptly issue payment to the claimant.

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Ratings

Merchants Bonding Company (MBC) has mixed ratings and reviews from customers. On the Better Business Bureau (BBB), MBC has an average rating of 2.8 out of 5 stars based on 27 customer reviews. Of those reviews, 10 are positive, 12 are negative, and 5 are neutral.

Positive Reviews

Positive reviews of MBC often mention the company’s quick and efficient claims process. Customers also appreciate the company’s customer service and the fact that they are a mutual company, meaning that it is owned by their policyholders.

Negative Reviews

Negative reviews of MBC often mention the company’s high prices and the fact that they have been slow to pay some claims. Customers also complain that the company’s customer service can be rude and unhelpful.

Complaints

MBC has received several complaints from customers over the years. The most common complaints are about the company’s high prices and its slow claims process. MBC has also received complaints about its customer service.

Resolutions

According to the BBB, MBC has resolved 23 of the 27 customer complaints that have been filed against it. The company has also made good on 10 of the 12 negative reviews that have been posted on the BBB.

Cancellations

Canceling a surety bond can be initiated by either the principal or the obligee. The principal is the party who is required to obtain the bond, while the obligee is the party who is protected by the bond.

Principal-Initiated Cancellations

The principal may cancel a surety bond for several reasons, such as:

Obligee-Initiated Cancellations

The obligee may cancel a surety bond if:

  • The principal has failed to comply with the terms of the underlying contract
  • The principal has committed fraud or dishonesty
  • The principal has become financially insolvent
Notice of Cancellation

Regardless of who initiates the cancellation, both the principal and the obligee must be given written notice of cancellation. The notice of cancellation must specify the date on which the bond will be canceled.

Renewal

Most surety bonds have a term of one year. If the principal wishes to continue the bond for another year, they must renew the bond before it expires.

Renewal Process

The renewal process typically involves:

Renewal Premiums

Renewal premiums are typically based on the principal’s creditworthiness and the experience of the principal on the bond. In some cases, the surety company may offer a discount on the renewal premium if the principal has a good history of performance on the bond.

Importance of Renewing Bonds

It is important to renew surety bonds before they expire to avoid a lapse in coverage. A lapse in coverage can leave the obligee unprotected and could also result in legal action against the principal.

Benefits of Joining Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)

Joining Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) (MBC) as a policyholder brings many benefits:

  1. Financial Strength and Stability: MBC has a solid financial position, assuring you that it can meet its commitments to policyholders.
  2. Competitive Rates and Flexible Payments: MBC provides competitive rates on surety bonds and insurance. Plus, you get flexible payment options to suit your budget.
  3. Exceptional Customer Service: Count on MBC for outstanding customer service. Their experienced team is ready to answer questions and assist you.
  4. Mutual Ownership Structure: MBC is owned by policyholders, aligning the company’s interests with yours.
  5. Commitment to Innovation: MBC keeps innovating to meet policyholders’ evolving needs.
  6. Wide Range of Products and Services: MBC offers various surety bonds and insurance to meet diverse needs.
  7. Experienced Underwriting Team: Rely on MBC’s experienced underwriting team to assess your risk and provide the right coverage.
  8. Fast and Efficient Claims Processing: MBC is dedicated to swiftly and efficiently processing claims. Their professionals work to resolve your claims quickly.
  9. Discount Opportunities: Enjoy various discount opportunities, including good credit discounts, experience discounts, and multiple bond discounts.
  10. Strong Reputation: MBC has a longstanding reputation for integrity and quality service. Joining them means choosing a company you can trust.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1: What types of surety bonds does Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) offer?

Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) provides various surety bonds, such as:

  • Contract bonds
  • Commercial bonds
  • Fidelity bonds
  • License and permit bonds

2: What is the process for obtaining a surety bond from Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)?

Getting a surety bond from Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) usually involves:

  1. Submitting a bond application
  2. The company reviewing your application and possibly asking for more info
  3. Once approved, paying a premium
  4. The company issuing the surety bond

3: How much does it cost to obtain a surety bond from Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)?

The cost of a surety bond from Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) varies based on factors like the type of bond, bond amount, and the principal’s creditworthiness.

4: How do I file a claim with Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual)?

To file a claim with Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual), you can reach out directly or through an independent insurance agent.

Conclusion

Navigating the world of surety bonds is made easier with Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual). From transparent premium structures to a commitment to customer service, this company stands as a beacon of reliability in the industry.

Choosing Merchants Bonding Company (Mutual) means more than securing a bond; it means joining a community that values trust and integrity.

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