Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond: A Comprehensive Guide
January 13th, 2021
This guide provides information for insurance agents to help contractors on Oregon Landscape Contractor bonds
At a Glance:
- Average Cost: Between $100 – $200 per year
- Bond Amount: Dependent on the total job charge for projects in a 12 month period
|Bond Amount||Job Charge (12 month period)|
|$3,000||$0 – $10,000|
|$10,000||$10,001 – $24,999
*Contractors who engage in certain hardscaping services will be required to purchase the $10,000 bond limit
|$15,000||$25,000 – $49,999|
|$20,000||$50,000 or greater|
The LCB defines job charge as “the sum of all contracts (one or more) during a 12-month period at the same job site with the same owner.”
- Who Needs It: All individuals and businesses seeking to obtain a landscape contractor license in the State of Oregon
- Purpose: To ensure the public will receive compensation for any damages should the contractor fail to comply with licensing law
- Who Regulates Landscape Contractors in Oregon: The Oregon Landscape Contractors Board (LCB)
Oregon revised statute 671.530 requires landscape contractors operating in the state to obtain a license with the LCB. The Oregon legislature enacted the licensing laws and regulations to ensure that contractors engage in ethical business practices. In order to provide financial security for the enforcement of the licensing law, businesses must deposit cash or purchase and maintain either a $3,000, $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000 landscape contractor surety bond to be eligible for licensure.
What is the Purpose of the Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond?
Oregon requires businesses to purchase the Landscape Contractor Bond as part of the application process to obtain a landscape contractor license. The bond ensures that the public will receive compensation for financial harm if the contractor fails to comply with the licensing regulations. In short, the bond is a type of insurance that protects the public if the contractor breaks licensing laws.
How Can an Insurance Agent Obtain an Oregon Landscape Contractor Surety Bond?
BondExchange makes obtaining an Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond easy. Simply login to your account and use our keyword search to find the “contractor” bond in our database. Don’t have a login? Enroll now and let us help you satisfy your customers’ needs. Our friendly underwriting staff is available by phone (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 Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond?
No, a credit check is not required for the Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond. Because this bond is considered relatively low-risk, the same low rate is offered to all landscape contractors in Oregon.
How Much Does the Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond Cost?
The Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond will cost the following amount for each bond limit:
- $100 per year for the $3,000 and $10,000 bond limits
- $150 per year for the $15,000 bond limit
- $200 per year for the $20,000 bond limit
How Does Oregon Define “Landscape Construction Professional”?
Oregon revised statute 671.520 defines a landscape construction professional as an individual who performs any of the following services for compensation:
- Plant or install lawns, shrubs, vines, trees or nursery stock
- Prepare property on which lawns, shrubs, vines, trees or nursery stock is to be installed
- Install, maintain, or repair ornamental water features or and landscape drainage systems
- Maintain irrigation systems with the use of compressed air and as otherwise provided by the State Landscape Contractors Board by rule
- Install or repair landscape irrigation systems as provided by the board by rule
How Does Oregon Define “Landscape Contracting Business”?
To paraphrase Oregon revised statute 671.520, a landscape contracting business is any business entity who offers to perform, is capable of performing, or performs landscaping work as an independent business.
How Do Landscape Contractors Apply for a License in Oregon?
Landscape Contractors in Oregon must navigate several steps to secure their license. Below are the general guidelines, but contractors should refer to the LCB’s licensing page for details on the process.
License Period – All Oregon landscape contractor license are valid for one year from the date of issuance and must be renewed before the expiration date
Step 1 – Obtain a Professional License
Oregon requires landscape businesses to have at least one employee or owner maintain a Landscape Construction Professional License (LCP). The LCP license holder is responsible for supervising non-licensed employees of the landscaping business and provides the contracting business with the needed expertise to perform daily business operations. Contractors must complete the following steps prior to receiving their LCP license:
1.a Obtain the Necessary Experience – Contractors are only eligible to receive an LCP license if they meet any of the following experience criteria:
- Have been employed by a licensed landscape contractor for a minimum of 2 years (1 year if applying for a modified license)
- Have 2 years of relevant landscape experience (maintenance work, nursery work etc)
- Have an Associates, Bachelor’s, or Master’s degree in horticulture (degrees without cooperative work experience may be substituted with 6 months of related landscape experience)
- A certificate in horticulture from an accredited institution requiring of minimum of 72 credit hours for course completion
- Is currently a certified arborist by the International Society of Arboriculture
- Has completed a Landscape Industry Certification program administered by an entity licensed by the National Association of Landscape Professionals
- Is currently a certified member of APLD
- Is currently certified as backflow assembly tester by an organization approved by the Oregon Drinking Water Program
Contractors can learn more about the experience requirements here
1.b Complete the Application – Contractors can complete the LCP license application online here
1.c Pass the Exam – After submitting the application, contractors will receive an exam packet containing their exam ID number. Contractors can use this number to register for the licensure exam. Contractors can register for their exam here.
1.d Pay the Application Fee – After passing the licensing exam, contractors will need to submit a $170 licensing fee to the LCB
Step 2 – Obtain a Business License
The Landscape Contracting Business License allows contractors to submit bids to perform work. Contractors will need to complete the following steps when applying for a Landscape Contracting Business License:
2.a Form a Business Entity – Contractors will need to form a business entity and register the business with the Oregon Secretary of State
2.b Purchase a Surety Bond or Deposit Cash – Contractors will need to deposit cash or purchase and maintain either a $3,000, $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000 landscape contractor surety bond
2.c Purchase Insurance – Contractors will need to purchase and maintain liability insurance with a minimum limit of $500,000. Contractors with employees will also need to purchase workers’ compensation insurance.
2.d Complete the Application – Contractors can complete their application online here
2.e Pay Fees – Contractors must submit a $600 fee ($395 if the contractor is currently an ISA certified arborist) with their license application
How Does an Oregon Landscape Contractor Renew Their License?
Contractors can renew both their LCP and business licenses online here. Contractors who have been licensed for less than 6 years will need to complete 16 hours of continuing education per renewal period, and contractors who have been licensed for 6 years or more will need to complete 8 hours of continuing education. Contractors can learn more about the continuing education requirements here. All Oregon landscape contractor licenses are valid for one year from the date of issuance and must be renewed before the expiration date.
What Are the Insurance Requirements for Landscape Contractors in Oregon?
The State of Oregon requires landscape contractors to purchase liability insurance with a minimum limit of $500,000 when applying for their business license. Contractors with employees will also need to purchase workers’ compensation insurance.
How Do Oregon Landscape Contractors File Their Bond With The Oregon LCB?
Contractors can email their completed bond form, including the power of attorney, to [email protected].
The landscape contractor surety bond requires signatures from both the surety company that issues the bond and the contractor. 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
- Date the bond goes into effect
- Date the bond is signed
What Can Businesses Do to Avoid Claims Against the Oregon Landscape Contractor Bond?
To avoid claims on the Landscape Contractor Bond, contractors must follow all license regulations in the state, including some of the most important issues below that tend to cause claims:
- Pay all required taxes and fees
- Pay all suppliers and vendors
- Refund payments when breach of contract occurs
What Other Insurance Products Can Agents Offer Landscape Contractors in Oregon?
Oregon requires landscape contractors to obtain liability insurance. Contractors with employees will also need to purchase workers’ compensation insurance. 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. A list of brokers in this space can be found here.
How Can Insurance Agents Prospect for Oregon Landscape Contractor Customers?
Oregon conveniently provides a public database to search for active landscape contractors in the state. The database can be accessed here. Contact BondExchange for additional marketing resources. Agents can also leverage our print-mail relationships for discounted mailing services.
What other Contractor License Bonds are Required in Oregon?
Contractors in Oregon will need to obtain specific bonds correlating with their license type. Below are all the different contractor licensing bonds required by the State of Oregon:
- Contractor License – Bond limit ranges between $10,000 – $75,000
- Public Works – $30,000
- Sewage Disposal Service – Bond limits of $5,000 and $15,000