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How much does a Florida health club bond cost?
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services requires health studios to post $25,000 surety bonds if they rely on a third party to collect fees more than 30 days before they are due. The bond will be required each year for five years.
Florida health studio bonds are subject to underwriting, which means the amount you’ll pay depends on a review of your professional qualifications. However, highly qualified applicants are typically approved for their surety bond for 1-3% of the total bond amount.
Why do I need this bond?
By posting a Florida health studio bond, the principal (health studio) pledges to abide by all rules, laws and regulations stated in section 501.012 through 501.019 of the Florida Statutes, which is also referred to as the Florida Health Studio Act. Specifically, the bond ensures that the principal provides all services as contracted and reimburses members for any contracted services not delivered.
If the health studio violates any of these terms, a claim can be filed against the bond to protect club members from financial loss up to the full bond amount. The studio must then reimburse the surety for damages paid out.
What’s the fine print?
Health club studio surety bonds in Florida remain continuous until canceled. The surety can cancel the bond by giving written notice of cancellation to the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The notice must contain the full name, city and state where the principal is located, as well as the agency code number assigned to the principal by the department. Cancellation becomes effective 30 days after the department receives the notice.
If a health studio collects fees more than 30 days in advance or has a third party collecting the fees, the owner of the health studio must be bonded for a period of 5 years.
How to become a health studio in Florida
To become a registered health studio in Florida, applicants must do the following:
- provide the name, physical and mailing address, telephone number, fax number, email address and website of the studio
- provide the legal name, address, telephone number, fax number, email address and website of the owner
- select the type of business organization being registered
- provide the applicant’s federal employer identification number
- provide the name and address of each direct or beneficial owner with at least 10% interest in the establishment, the person in charge of daily operations and all corporate offers and directors, if applicable
- post a surety bond in the proper amount
- complete the registration application
- pay the $300 fee for each location
- provide a copy of the membership contract