Florida Auto Dealer Bond Page

As the second largest state in the sunbelt, the sunshine state is known for its beautiful beaches, warm climates and nautical recreations. It is one of the fastest growing states when it comes to population. You are reading this probably because you are opening up a new dealership in the Alligator state or continuing your operations here. 

The 2023 Florida Statutes, Title XXIII, Chapter 320 states that before the dealer license is issued, a surety bond or irrevocable letter of credit is required. The statute determines that any person who buys, sells or deals in three or more vehicles in any 12 month period is a motor vehicle dealer. Franchise motor vehicle dealers, independent motor vehicle dealers, wholesaler, and wholesalers who sell motor vehicle dealers are required to purchase the $25,000 bond whereas the recreational vehicle dealers are required to purchase the $10,000 bond. 


  • Who Needs It: all franchised motor vehicle dealer, independent motor vehicle dealer, wholesale motor vehicle dealer, salvage motor vehicle dealer, motor vehicle auctioneer, motor vehicle brokers, 
  • Bond Amount: $25,000 bond for all motor vehicle dealers; $10,000 for recreational vehicle dealers
  • Cost: Starts at $100 for one year, dependent on the applicant’s credit score

You can click on the “Quote” button below to obtain your FL Auto Dealer Bond quote. 

Florida Sample Dealer Bond Form
Florida Sample Dealer Bond Form


Florida Auto Dealer Bond FAQs

What are the different classifications of Florida auto dealer bonds

$25,000 Bond Limit

  • Franchise Vehicle Dealer Bond: repair, service, buying, selling or dealing vehicles under an agreement with an Original Equipment Manufacturer such as Honda
  • Wholesale Dealer: buy, sell, or deal in motor vehicles with only other licensed dealers
  • Motor Vehicle Auctioneer: sell motor vehicles or recreational vehicles to the highest licensed dealer bidders 
  • Salvage Dealer: acquire salvaged or wrecked motor vehicles for resale
  • Independent Vehicle Dealers: the most common everyday mom and pop used dealerships

$10,000 Bond Limit

  • Recreational Vehicle Dealer

If I Am Both a Franchise Dealer and an Independent Dealer, Do I Need Two Different Bonds? 

No, you only need one bond. If you already have the $25,000 bond, it can be used for all the license classification that it is intended for. 

Why Is a Florida Dealer Bond Required? 

The professions of motor vehicle dealers involve servicing, repairing and selling of vehicles, which has a lot of inherent risk. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles instituted the dealer bond requirement to protect the 3rd parties doing business with the bonded dealers. When a Florida dealer commits a fraud against a customer (i.e., selling a car without a title), the customer could file a claim against this bond. Then the surety carrier would assemble a team to investigate the claim, if the claim is found to be valid, then the customer would receive a compensation up to the bond amount. 

How To Prevent a Claim From Being Filed

If there is a claim on your bond, your current bond would likely be canceled and you will either be denied a bond or have to purchase a very expensive bond. You need a bond to keep your license so it would be very expensive if a claim is found to be valid. Therefore, it makes a ton of sense to avoid a claim from ever being filed on your bond. This is quite easy. There are specific actions you can take to prevent a claim from being filed on your bond: 

  • Ensure every vehicle you sell has a valid title and registration is up to date
  • Ensure no vehicle you sell has a lien on it 
  • Pay relevant taxes and fees on time
  • Don’t ever alter odometer without the permission or the knowledge of the buyer 

This is not an inclusive list of all the actions you should take. During your dealer education process, you should be taught the actions that would result in claims. Please don’t do those things. 

Is There An Expiration Date for the Florida Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond?

April 30 of each year for the following bonds

  • $25,000 Independent Vehicle Dealers
  • $25,000 Wholesaler Bond
  • $25,000 Motor Vehicle Auctioneer
  • $25,000 Salvage Dealer

September 30 of each year for the following bonds

  • $10,000 Recreational Vehicle Dealer Bond

December 31st of each year for the following bonds

  • $25,000 Franchise Vehicle Dealer

Why Are FL Motor Vehicle Dealer Bonds So Expensive? 

Given that the Florida motor vehicle dealer bond is of the standard $25,000, the major determinant on the bond is the inherent risk involved in the class of dealership and the credit profile of the applicant. 

Risk for different classes of dealership

Typically, franchise dealers become franchisees of a specific brand such as Honda through heavy vetting. The automotive original equipment manufacturer (OEM) such as Honda typically looks at the history of the applicant, their financial strength, and experience within the industry. It can take a year from start to finish to be a franchisee. In some ways, the automotive OEMs vetted on behalf of the surety company. Therefore, it is much less risky for franchisees to be awarded a bond. On the other hand, independent used dealers are not vetted by automotive OEMs and tend to have less financial strength, so it presents much more risk to the surety carriers. Therefore, typically, franchisee is charged at a lower rate than independent dealers. 

Credit Profile of the Applicant

Credit score and credit history are measures of trustworthiness of the applicant. Surety carriers see both as barometers of the probability that a claim is made against the bond. The higher the credit score and the longer credit history the applicant has, the lower the rate on the bond

Can I Buy a Bond for More Than One Year? 

Yes, you can buy FL Auto Dealer Bond for a maximum of two years. A lot of our customers buy a bond for a two year term because buying a multi-year bond will get a more affordable annual rate. 


How Do I Submit My Bond? 

Typically, you would need to submit your bond in person at one of Florida’s many motor vehicle field operation offices. You can choose to mail the bond but if your bond is rejected, you would not know right away. We have listed out the motor vehicle field operation offices below, categorized by countries they are located. You will need to submit the original bond with a power of attorney form to an of the motor vehicle field operation offices below:


Address: 1135 Banks Road Margate, Florida 33063 
Phone: (954) 969-4216 option 0
Email: DmvRegion1@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 318 Southeast 25th Avenue Ocala, Florida 34471
Phone: (352) 512-6782 option 3
Email: DmvRegion2@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 9550 Regency Square Boulevard, Suite 100 Jacksonville, Florida 32225 
Phone: (904) 365-2681 
Email: DmvRegion3@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 1697 N Woodland Blvd Suite 111D Deland, Florida 32720 
Phone: (386) 327-9220 option 3 
Email: DmvRegion4@flhsmv.gov


Address: 4101 Clarcona-Ocoee Road, Suite 160 Orlando, Florida 32810 
Phone: (407) 445-7400 option 3 
Email: DmvRegion5@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 5701 East Hillsborough Avenue Suite 2228 Tampa, Florida 33610 
Phone: (813) 612-7110 option 4 
Email: DmvRegion6@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 2900 Apalachee Parkway, Room B-152, MS-76 Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0600 
Phone: (850) 617-2999 option 2 
Email: DmvRegion7@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 6030 County Road 2321  Panama City, Florida 32404  
Phone: (850) 767-3660 option 1 
Email: DmvRegion7@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 100 Stumpfield Road Pensacola, Florida 32503 
Phone:  (850) 475-5415 option 1 
Email: DmvRegion7@flhsmv.gov 


Address: 323 10th Avenue West, Suite 200 Palmetto, Florida 34221 
Phone:  (941) 723-4551 option 6 
Email: DmvRegion8 @flhsmv.gov 

Palm Beach

Address: 901 Northpoint Parkway, Suites 115 & 116 West Palm Beach, Florida 33407  
Phone: (561) 640-6820 option 5 
Email: DmvRegion9@flhsmv.gov


Address: 12601 NW 42nd Avenue Opa Locka, Florida 33054
Phone: (786) 804-4180 
Email: DmvRegion10@flhsmv. gov 

How Do I Know My Bond Has Been Accepted? 

Given that you are going in person to submit the bond, typically a staff member from the motor vehicle field operation offices will tell you if your bond is accepted or rejected. 

What Information Is Stated on my Bond? 

Apart from the standard information such as insurance company and business name, the following additional information are required on your bond

  • Name of the Surety Agent
  • Phone Number of the Surety Agent
  • Address of the Surety Agent
  • Signature of the Principal

Is There An Alternative to a Surety Bond? 

Yes, an irrevocable letter of credit can be used in place of a surety bond. This irrevocable letter of credit needs to be of the exact same amount of the surety bond. For example, you need to have an irrevocable letter of credit of $25,000 to use in place of the Florida surety bond of $25,000. 

Can I Cancel My Bond? 

Yes, you can. You typically have 30 days from the date of cancellation request to the date when the bond is officially canceled. Your refund will be a prorated amount based on the effective date and the cancellation date of your bond. Please note that once we cancel the bond, we will need to inform the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, who will then suspend your license. You need your bond to be active as long as you have your license.