South Carolina Bingo Bond: A Comprehensive Guide

September 2, 2022

South Carolina Bingo Bond

This guide provides information for insurance agents to help their customers obtain a South Carolina Bingo bond.

At a Glance:

  • Average Cost: Between 1.5% to 4% of the bond amount per year based on the applicant’s credit history
  • Bond Amount: Based on the type of license being applied for (more on this later)
  • Who Needs it: All non-profit organizations and promoters sponsoring bingo games as well as manufacturers and distributors of bingo cards operating in South Carolina
  • Purpose: To ensure the state will receive compensation for financial harm if the principal fails to pay all required taxes, fines, and fees
  • Who Regulates Bingo in South Carolina: The South Carolina Department of Revenue

Background

The South Carolina Bingo Tax Act requires all non-profit organizations and promoters sponsoring bingo games as well as manufacturers and distributors of bingo cards to obtain a license with the Department of Revenue. The South Carolina legislature enacted the licensing requirement to ensure that licensees engage in ethical business practices. To provide financial security for the enforcement of the licensing law, non-profits, promoters, manufacturers, and distributors must purchase and maintain a surety bond to be eligible for licensure.

What is the Purpose of the South Carolina Bingo Bond?

South Carolina requires non-profits, promoters, manufacturers, and distributors of bingo cards to purchase a surety bond as a prerequisite to obtaining a Bingo License. The bond ensures that the state will receive compensation for financial harm if the licensee fails to abide by the regulations outlined in South Carolina Statute 12-21-4230. Specifically, the bond protects the state if the licensee fails to pay all required taxes, fines, and fees. In short, the bond is a type of insurance that protects the state if the licensee violates the terms of their license

South Carolina Bingo Bond Form

South Carolina Bingo Bond Form

How Can an Insurance Agent Obtain a South Carolina Bingo Surety Bond?

BondExchange makes obtaining a South Carolina Bingo bond easy. Simply login to your account and use our keyword search to find the “Bingo” 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.

Not an agent? Then let us pair you with one!

BX Agent Finder Link

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How is the Bond Amount Determined?

The required amount on the South Carolina Bingo bond is determined based on the license type being applied for, as outlined below:

License Type Bond Amount
Class AA $50,000
Class B $20,000
Class C $10,000
Class E $10,000
Class F $10,000
Promoter $10,000
Manufacturer $10,000
Distributor $10,000

Is a Credit Check Required for the South Carolina Bingo Bond?

Surety companies will run a credit check on the applicant to determine eligibility and pricing for the South Carolina Bingo bond. Applicants with excellent credit and work experience can expect to receive the best rates. Applicants with poor credit may be declined by some surety companies or pay higher rates. The credit check is a “soft hit”, meaning that the credit check will not affect the applicant’s credit.

How Much Does the South Carolina Bingo Bond Cost?

The South Carolina Bingo Bond can cost anywhere between 1.5% to 4% of the bond amount per year. Insurance companies determine the rate based on several factors including your customer’s credit score and experience. The chart below offers a quick reference for the cost of $50,000, $20,000, and $10,000 bond requirements.

$50,000 Bingo Bond Cost

Credit Score Bond Cost (1 year)
800+ $750
650 – 799 $1,000
600 – 649 $2,000

$20,000 Bingo Bond Cost

Credit Score Bond Cost (1 year)
800+ $300
650 – 799 $400
600 – 649 $800

$10,000 Bingo Bond Cost

Credit Score Bond Cost (1 year)
800+ $150
650 – 799 $200
600 – 649 $400

*The credit score ranges do not include other factors that may result in a change to the annual premium offered to your customers, including but not limited to, years of experience and underlying credit factors contained within the business owner’s credit report.

Who is Required to Purchase the Bond?

South Carolina requires all non-profits and promoters sponsoring bingo games as well as manufacturers and distributors of bingo cards to purchase a surety bond as a prerequisite to obtaining a license from the Department of Revenue. To paraphrase South Carolina Statute 12-21-3920, bingo is defined as a game of chance where players win monetary prizes if the numbers/symbols on their game card match those being selected.

What is the Application Process for a South Carolina Bingo License?

Non-profits, promoters, manufacturers, and distributors must navigate several steps to obtain a South Carolina Bingo License. Below are the general guidelines, but applicants should refer to the licensing statutes for details on the process.

Step 1 – Determine the License Type

South Carolina requires individuals and organizations to obtain specific licenses corresponding to their role in facilitating a bingo game. Below are the different types of the South Carolina Bingo License:

    • Non-profit Organization: Required for non-profits hosting a bingo game. There are multiple license types available for non-profits:
      • Class AA: Offers prizes in a single session that range from $50,000 to $250,000
      • Class B: Does not offer more than $8,000 in prizes in a single session
      • Class C: Offers no more than $20 in prizes a game for a single session. Licensees may offer $150 in prizes for 6 jackpot games in a single session. Additionally, licensees may use hard bingo cards if certain requirements are met.
      • Class E: Operates bingo games run exclusively by volunteer members of the organization that are South Carolina residents. The organization’s bingo proceeds must not exceed $40,000 a quarter and they may not offer more than $4,000 in prizes a session
      • Class F: Has the same requirements and limitations as a Class E license buy may only use bingo proceeds for paying their utility bills, charges for bingo paper, or for their organization’s charitable purpose
    • Class D: A temporary license allowing a person or organization to host a bingo game at a fair and limits them to offering prizes of no more than $50 worth of merchandise per game
    • Promoter: A person hired by a non-profit to manage, operate, or conduct a bingo game. Promoters must obtain a license for each non-profit organization they run games for and may not hold more than 5 licenses at any given time.
    • Manufacturer: Manufacturers bingo cards
    • Distributor: Brings or sells bingo cards

*No bond is required to obtain a Class D License.

Step 2 – Purchase a Surety Bond

Applicants must purchase and maintain a surety bond (limits outlined above).

Step 3 – Complete the Application

All South Carolina Bingo License applications (see Step 1 for application forms) should be mailed to the following address:

South Carolina Department of Revenue
Bingo Licensing and Enforcement
PO Box 125
Columbia, SC 29214-0945

Applicants must pay the following fees when submitting their applications:

License Type Bond Amount
Class AA $4,000
Class B $1,000
Class C None
Class E $500
Class F $100
Class D
  • $100 if games will be played for less than 10 days
  • $200 if games will be played for more than 10 days
Promoter $1,000
Manufacturer $15,000
Distributor $2,000

Does the South Carolina Bingo License Need to be Renewed?

All South Carolina Promoter, Manufacturer, and Distributor Bingo Licenses expire annually and must be renewed before the expiration date. Licensees should mail their completed renewal applications (click here for promoter and here for manufacturer/distributor), including all required fees, to the following address:

South Carolina Department of Revenue
Bingo Licensing and Enforcement
PO Box 125
Columbia, SC 29214-0945

Non-profit organizations do not need to renew their Bingo Licenses.

What are the Insurance Requirements for the South Carolina Bingo License?

South Carolina does not require applicants to purchase any form of liability insurance as a prerequisite to obtaining a Bingo License. Applicants must purchase and maintain a surety bond (limits outlined above).

How do Licensees File Their South Carolina Bingo Bonds?

Licensees should submit their completed bond forms, including the power of attorney, to the following address:

South Carolina Department of Revenue
Bingo Licensing and Enforcement
PO Box 125
Columbia, SC 29214-0945

The surety bond requires signatures, including witness signatures, from both the surety company that issues the bond and from the applicant. The surety company should include the following information on the bond form:

  • Legal name and address of the entity/individual(s) buying the bond
  • Surety company’s name and address
  • Date of the bond is signed

What Can Licensees do to Avoid Claims Made Against Their South Carolina Bingo Bonds?

To avoid claims against their South Carolina Bingo bonds, licensees must ensure that they pay all required taxes, fines, and fees.

What Other Insurance Products Can Agents Offer Bingo License Holders in South Carolina?

Most reputable license holders will purchase liability insurance. 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 South Carolina Bingo Bond Customers?

South Carolina unfortunately does not provide a public database of active bingo license holders in the state. We suggest contacting the Department of Revenue to obtain this information. Contact BondExchange for additional marketing resources. Agents can also leverage our print-mail relationships for discounted mailing services.

2022-09-02T15:10:11-04:00