Western Surety Company Encourages the Use of E-Bonds

One of the immediate challenges facing the Surety Industry arising from the COVID-19 pandemic has been the delivery of properly executed bonds to contractors and/or project owners. With the continuing need for social distancing and sureties and insurance brokerage staff working remotely, the logical solution is to replace the paper bonds with a digitally issued document; a position advocated by the Surety Association of Canada (SAC) in their March 16, 2020 Commuiqué. This can be read here.

A digital bond/e-bond can be issued remotely from any location and is an electronic file that contains an embedded digital certificate creating a secure electronic document with a uniquely identifiable fingerprint.

Over the last couple of weeks, there has been considerable interest in digital bonds from construction companies and the project owners and obligees for whom they work. Western Surety Company strongly encourages the use of e-bonds and we are ready to respond to the e-bonding needs of our business partners. We are registered with the following third party e-bond providers:

To be prepared to issue an e-bond, the broker needs to register with an e-bond party provider and direct their contractors to register with that same provider. Brokers also need to advise contractors to obtain a digital seal and signature. Assistance is readily available from any of the e-bond providers. However, due to the increased demand for their services, the e-bond providers may likely be very busy. We wish to stress the importance of brokers and contractors allowing for some lead time before a tender closing to ensure they are properly set up with an e-bond provider.

Once registered with an e-bond provider and before e-bonds can be issued, all broker personnel with an existing WSC power of attorney (POA) must also secure an e-bond POA from us. Please note that a common broker account cannot be shared. Each individual must register separately. To obtain the e-bond POA, e-mail requests must be sent to:

Western Canada
Greg Salmon
gsalmon@westernsurety.ca

Ontario
Cory Manchur
cmanchur@westernsurety.ca

Atlantic Canada
Wes Benson
wbenson@westernsurety.ca

For new POA consideration, please send an e-mail to your respective WSC underwriter that includes a written request from an executive of the brokerage recommending the individual along with a copy of their resume.

A Shout-Out to our Broker Partners

We are open for business as always and all of our staff continue to be available to assist you in any way we can. We want to acknowledge and sincerely thank our broker partners for their admirable efforts during these difficult times to provide on-going information and advice and most importantly, uninterrupted service to their clients.
We appreciate your hard work.

 

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