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In 1966, after seeing the rejection that ex-offenders face in the job market, the United States department of labor set up the Federal Bonding Program FBP. The program issues fidelity bonds to recruiters to enable them to employ hard-to-hire job aspirants.

How does the federal bonding program work?

As stated above, the federal bonding program guarantees at-risk job aspirants. It is a mechanism that aims at helping justice-involved persons job aspirants to land and maintain jobs. The program gives fidelity bonds that serve as:

  • Insurance to shield the employer from employee infidelity
  • The insurance serves as a surety for employee job honesty
  • The bonds protect the employer from stealing, fraud, vandalism, embezzlement, theft, and forgery.       

However, the program does not insure;

  • Losses resulting from failure to work on the contract
  • Accidents and injuries at work
  • It is neither bail nor a bond

How does the federal bonding program help ex-felons get a job?

The federal bonding program gives employers free fidelity bonds for a maximum duration of six months. It aims to motivate employers to recruit persons with challenges securing employment as they do not have to worry about employee dishonesty.

What are the limitations of the federal bonding program?

The program is limited to:

  • Workers who have attained the valid working age
  • Employers must pay the workers their earnings and accordingly submit federal taxes
  • The employment must be durable ( at least six months)

Who is bondable by the program?

  • Any person whose criminal history is a hindrance to job placement
  • Persons rehabilitated and recovering from drug and substance abuse
  • Those without work experience
  • Those with a low credit score

Does the program insure those already working?

Ideally, the Federal Bonding program is meant to increase the absorption of hard-to-hire new job applicants. That said, though, fidelity bonds can be given to guarantee an employee who is not currently insurable in their place of work. In addition, the bonds can cover transfer or promotion to a new role or prevent dismissal or contract termination.

What is the duration of the program?

Usually, the federal bonding coverage is issued freely to employers or job seekers for six months. Therefore, the coverage expires automatically after the elapsing of the first six months unless it is renewed.
Suppose no claim for employee dishonesty is laid during the first six months of bonding coverage; the employer can purchase further bond coverage though at a lesser amount through the Federal Bonding Program.

Moreover, in some instances, employers may be eligible to get an additional charge-free renewal bond for another similar duration( six months) for a cumulation of up to 12 months of charge-free bonding coverage.

Who can appeal for the bond?

Either the employer or the job seeker can apply for the federal bonds. Application is possible through contacting the nearby Local Bonding Coordinator.

At what time can the bond be given?

Federal bonds are issued only when there is a job offer with a set start date. The federal bonding insurance will commence on the job start date and automatically lapses six months from that date (unless renewed).

What is the maximum bonding amount?

The federal bonding program issue covers up to $25,000 in increments of $5,000. There is no liability allowable for the business. Bonds are automatically set to $5,000. Bonding assurance amounts more than $5,000 must be authorized by the relevant agencies.

Getting help

If you live in New York city-state, you can apply for federal bonding by reaching out to the primary office via SpecialPopulations@labor.ny.gov

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