Milwaukee Pawnbroker Bond: A Comprehensive Guide
At a Glance:
- Average Cost: $100 per year
- Bond Amount: $500
- Who Needs it: All pawnbrokers operating in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- Purpose: To protect the public from financial harm if the pawnbroker violates the terms of their license
- Who Regulates Pawnbrokers in Milwaukee: The Milwaukee City Clerk’s Office
Milwaukee Code of Ordinances 92-23 requires all pawnbrokers operating within the city to obtain a secondhand dealer’s license from the City Clerk’s Office. The Milwaukee City 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 $500 surety bond to be eligible for a license.
What is the Purpose of the Milwaukee Pawnbroker Bond?
Milwaukee 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 Wisconsin Statute 134.71. Specifically, the bond protects the public if the pawnbroker engages in acts of fraud or breaches 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 Milwaukee Pawnbroker Surety Bond?
BondExchange makes obtaining a Milwaukee 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.
At BondExchange, our 40 years of experience, leading technology, and access to markets ensures that we have the knowledge and resources to provide your clients with fast and friendly service whether obtaining quotes or issuing bonds.
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Is a Credit Check Required for the Milwaukee Pawnbroker Bond?
No, a credit check is not required for the Milwaukee Pawnbroker bond. Because the bond is considered relatively low risk, the same low rate is offered to all pawnbrokers operating in the city, regardless of their credit history.
How Much Does the Milwaukee Pawnbroker Bond Cost?
The Milwaukee Pawnbroker bond costs just $100 per year.
Who is Required to Purchase the Milwaukee Pawnbroker Bond?
Milwaukee requires pawnbrokers to purchase a surety bond as a prerequisite to obtaining a secondhand dealer’s license. To paraphrase Milwaukee Code of Ordinance 92-21, a pawnbroker is a person who issues loans to individuals that leave their property, as collateral, for the broker to sell on condition that the customer may repurchase the property within a fixed period of time.
Exemptions to this definition include:
- Auctioneers registered with the state
- Returns or trade-ins of new jewelry
- Occasional garage sales, antique shows, and gun or knife shows
- Nonprofit organizations or sales where the proceeds are donated to a nonprofit
- Businesses dealing exclusively in motor vehicles, stamps, audio and video media, baseball cards, books and magazines, works of fine art, or industrial machinery
How Do Pawnbrokers Apply for a License in Milwaukee?
Pawnbrokers in Milwaukee must navigate several steps to obtain a secondhand dealer’s license. Below are the general guidelines, but applicants should refer to the City Clerk’s website for details on the process.
License Period – All Milwaukee Secondhand Dealer’s Licenses expire two years from the date of issuance and must be renewed before the expiration date.
Step 1 – Complete the Fingerprinting Requirement
Pawnbrokers whose fingerprints are not already on file with the Milwaukee Police Department must first report to the Police Administration Building at the following address and times in order to be fingerprinted:
Police Administration Building, Room 330
951 James Lovell St.
Monday – Friday, 8 am – 3 pm
Brokers can call the police department at (414) 935-7281 to determine if their prints are currently on file, and only applicants that deal exclusively in bicycles are exempt from the fingerprinting requirement.
Step 2 – Purchase a Surety Bond
Pawnbrokers must purchase and maintain a $500 surety bond.
Step 3 – Submit an Application
Pawnbrokers should submit a completed application to the City Clerk’s Office at the following address:
200 E. Wells St, Room 105
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Pawnbrokers must complete the application in its entirety and ensure they submit the following items:
- $275 annual fee
- Surety bond
- Business License Application
- Business License Plan of Operation
- Supplemental Plan of Operation
At least 24 hours after filing an application, pawnbrokers should call the Milwaukee Police Department at (414) 935-7430 for instructions on complying with the residency requirement. Applications will not be processed until this requirement is complete. Contact the City Clerk’s Office for additional assistance in the application process.
How Do Milwaukee Pawnbrokers Renew Their Licenses?
To renew their license, pawnbrokers should contact the City Clerk’s Office to obtain a renewal application. Pawnbrokers must pay a $275 renewal fee and ensure that they renew their surety bond to avoid termination of their license. All Milwaukee Pawnbroker Licenses expire two years from the date of issuance and must be renewed before the expiration date.
What are the Insurance Requirements for Pawnbrokers in Milwaukee?
Milwaukee does not require pawnbrokers to purchase any additional insurance. Pawnbrokers must purchase and maintain a $500 surety bond.
How Do Milwaukee Pawnbrokers File Their Bonds?
Pawnbrokers should submit their completed bond forms, including the power of attorney, to the City Clerk’s Office at the following address:
200 E. Wells St, Room 105
Milwaukee, WI 53202
The bond requires signatures, including witness signatures, from both surety companies that issue 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
- Name of the surety companies
- License term period
What Can Milwaukee Pawnbrokers do to Avoid Claims Made Against Their Bonds?
To avoid claims on their bonds, pawnbrokers in Milwaukee 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 Milwaukee?
Milwaukee does not require pawnbrokers to purchase any liability insurance. However, most reputable businesses will purchase this insurance anyway. Bonds are our only business at BondExchange, so we do not issue liability insurance, but our agents often utilize brokers for this specific line of business. Agents can access a list of brokers here.
How Can Insurance Agents Prospect for Milwaukee Pawnbroker Customers?
Milwaukee unfortunately does not provide a public database of active pawnbrokers in the city. However, we suggest contacting the City Clerk’s Office to obtain this information. Contact BondExchange for additional marketing resources. Agents can also leverage our print-mail relationships for discounted mailing services.