Horry County Pawnbroker Bond: A Comprehensive Guide
March 14, 2023
At a Glance:
- Average Cost: $100 per year
- Bond Amount: $1,000
- Who Needs it: All pawnbrokers operating in the unincorporated areas of Horry County, South Carolina
- Purpose: To protect the public from financial harm if the pawnbroker violates the terms of their license
- Who Regulates Pawnbrokers in Horry County: The Horry County Business License Department
The Horry County Code of Ordinances 12.5-17 requires all pawnbrokers operating in the unincorporated areas of the county to obtain a license from the Business Licensing Department. The Horry County Council enacted the licensing requirement to ensure that pawnbrokers engage in ethical business practices. To provide financial security for the enforcement of the licensing law, pawnbrokers must purchase and maintain a $1,000 surety bond to be eligible for a license.
What is the Purpose of the Horry County Pawnbroker Bond?
Horry County requires pawnbrokers to purchase a surety bond as part of the application process to obtain a pawnbroker license. The bond protects the public from financial harm if the pawnbroker fails to comply with the regulations set forth in the Horry County Code of Ordinances 12.5-22. Specifically, the bond protects the public if the pawnbroker engages in any acts of fraud or breaches any consumer contracts. In short, the bond is a type of insurance that protects the public if the pawnbroker violates the terms of their license.
How Can an Insurance Agent Obtain a Horry County Pawnbroker Surety Bond?
BondExchange makes obtaining a Horry County Pawnbroker bond easy. Simply log in to your account and use our keyword search to find the “Pawnbroker” bond in our database. Don’t have a login? Gain access now and let us help you satisfy your customers’ needs. Our friendly underwriting staff is available by phone at (800) 438-1162, email, or chat from 7:30 AM to 7:00 PM EST to assist you.
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Is a Credit Check Required for the Horry County Pawnbroker Bond?
No, a credit check is not required for the Horry County Pawnbroker bond. Because the bond is considered relatively low risk, the same low rate is offered to all pawnbrokers operating in the county, regardless of their credit history.
How Much Does the Horry County Pawnbroker Bond Cost?
The Horry County Pawnbroker bond costs just $100 per year.
Who is Required to Purchase the Horry County Pawnbroker Bond?
Horry County requires pawnbrokers operating in the unincorporated areas of the county to purchase a surety bond as a prerequisite to obtaining a pawnbroker license. To paraphrase the Horry County Code of Ordinances 12.5-16, a pawnbroker is a person who issues loans to individuals that leave their personal property, as collateral, for the broker to sell on condition that the customer may repurchase the property within a fixed period of time.
Also, Horry County defines any person engaged in the business of purchasing or selling secondhand goods with the general public is defined as a “pawnbroker”, and must obtain a license and surety bond before conducting business.
How Do Pawnbrokers Apply for a License in Horry County?
Pawnbrokers in Horry County must navigate several steps to obtain a license and must obtain a separate license for each pawn shop location they operate. Below are the general guidelines, but applicants refer to the licensing statutes for details on the process.
License Period – All Horry County Pawnbroker Licenses expire on April 30 of each year and must be renewed before the expiration date.
Step 1 – Meet the Qualifications
To be eligible for a pawnbroker license in Horry County, pawnbrokers must meet all of the following criteria:
- Must be at least 21 years of age
- Must not have any employees under 21 years of age
- Have never been convicted of a crime related to receiving stolen goods, burglary, or robbery
Step 2 – Obtain a State Pawnbroker Certificate of Authority
Pawnbrokers must first obtain a certificate of authority from the South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs before applying for a local pawnbroker license in Horry County. Click here for additional information on the South Carolina Pawnbroker Certificate of Authority.
Step 3 – Purchase a Surety Bond
Pawnbrokers operating in the unincorporated areas of Horry County must purchase and maintain a $1,000 surety bond.
Step 4 – Complete the Application
Pawnbrokers should submit a completed application to the Business License Department at the following address:
P.O. Box 1275
Conway, SC 29528
Pawnbrokers must complete the application in its entirety and ensure they submit a surety bond along with a license fee determined by the pawnbroker’s estimated gross income for the next year. The Horry County Police Department must review and approve all applications before a pawnbroker license is issued. Contact the Business Licensing Department for additional assistance in the application process.
How Do Horry County Pawnbrokers Renew Their Licenses?
Pawnbrokers should contact the Business License Department to obtain a renewal application before their license expires. Brokers must also ensure they renew their surety bond to avoid the termination of their license. All Horry County Pawnbroker Licenses expire on April 30 of each year and must be renewed before the expiration date.
What are the Insurance Requirements for Horry County Pawnbrokers?
Horry County does not require pawnbrokers to purchase any form of liability insurance. However, South Carolina requires pawnbrokers to obtain adequate insurance coverage for all pledged goods in the event of loss by fire, theft, burglary, or liability to the pledger. Pawnbrokers must purchase and maintain a $5,000 surety bond.
How Do Horry County Pawnbrokers File Their Bonds?
Pawnbrokers should mail their completed bond forms, including the power of attorney, to the County Clerk of Court at the following address:
P.O. Box 677
Conway, SC 29528
The bond requires signatures from both the surety company that issues the bond and the applicant. The surety company should include the following information on the bond form:
- Legal name of the entity/individual(s) buying the bond
- Surety company’s name and state of incorporation
- Name of the obligee and the license type applied for
- Bond amount
- Date the bond goes into effect
- Date the bond is signed
What Can Horry County Pawnbrokers do to Avoid Claims Made Against Their Bonds?
To avoid claims on their bonds, pawnbrokers in Horry County must ensure that they:
- Do not engage in any acts of fraud or misrepresentation
- Do not breach contracts made with consumers
- Maintain all required transaction records
- Return all pledged goods that have been paid for
- Obtain proof of identification during each transaction
What Other Insurance Products Can Agents Offer Pawnbrokers in Horry County?
South Carolina requires pawnbrokers to obtain liability coverage for all pawned items. However, most reputable businesses will purchase this insurance anyway. Bonds are our only business at BondExchange, so we do not issue any other types of insurance, but our agents often utilize brokers for this specific line of business. A list of brokers in this space can be found here.
How Can Insurance Agents Prospect for Horry County Pawnbroker Customers?
Horry County unfortunately does not provide a public database of active pawnbrokers in the county. We suggest contacting the Business License Department to obtain this information. Contact BondExchange for additional marketing resources. Agents can also leverage our print-mail relationships for discounted mailing services.