How much does an auto dealer or wholesaler bond cost in South Carolina?
The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles requires motor vehicle dealers and wholesalers to post surety bonds. Wholesale auto auction, travel trailer and/or motorcycle dealers or wholesalers must post $15,000 bonds, while all other dealers and/or wholesalers must post $30,000 bonds.
These bonds are subject to underwriting, so the amount you’ll pay depends on an underwriter’s review. Qualified applicants could pay as little as $150 or $300, depending on the type of bond needed.
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|Bond Type||Bond Amount||Cost by Credit Score*|
|680 and up||679 - 600||599 or lower|
|Motor Vehicle Dealer and Wholesaler Bond Motor Vehicle Dealers and Wholesalers||$30,000||Starts at $300||$300-2,700||$2,000+||Apply Now|
|Motor Vehicle Dealer and Wholesaler Bond Recreational Vehicle or Motorcycle Dealers and Wholesalers||$15,000||Starts at $150||$750-1,500||$1,500+||Apply Now|
Why do I need this bond?
South Carolina auto dealer and wholesaler bonds ensure that principals (dealers and wholesalers) comply with all provisions of Title 56 of the South Carolina Code of Laws relating to motor vehicle dealers and the sale and transfer of motor vehicles. The bond protects any owner of a motor vehicle from any loss or damage suffered as a result of the principal’s actions or the actions of the principal’s salesmen or representatives. Harmed parties will be protected up to the full penal sum of the bond ($15,000 or $30,000), and the principal must reimburse the surety for all damages paid out.
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What’s the fine print?
Motor vehicle dealer and wholesaler surety bonds in South Carolina do not automatically expire with the license for which they were initially issued, but instead continue from license year to license year upon proper payment. The surety can cancel the bond by providing written notice of cancellation to the Department of Motor Vehicles 30 days before the effective date of termination.
Applicants must specify whether they’re a wholesale auto auction, travel trailer and/or motorcycle dealer or wholesaler on the bond form.
How to become an auto dealer in South Carolina
To become licensed as a retail dealer, wholesale dealer, motorcycle dealer, wholesale motorcycle dealer, travel trailer dealer or wholesale auto auction dealer in South Carolina, applicants must submit the following materials:
- Form DLA-1: Application for a Dealer or Wholesaler License
- diagram of your location to include building and display area
- surety bond in proper amount
- original Pre-Licensing Course Certificate
- current proof of garage liability insurance (if applying for dealer demonstration plates)
- copy of SC Department of Revenue Retail License
- Form AD-020-A: Affidavit of Eligibility for each owner owning 10% or more of the business
- SLED Criminal History report for each owner owning 10% or more of the business
Exact licensing requirements vary by license type.
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