Direct Bill Frequently Asked Questions
I am a principal/insured and I received a renewal invoice the reads Notice of Premium due, but I did not receive a renewal bond/policy. Why did I not receive my renewal bond/policy? We do not send out a renewal bond/policy/continuation certificate until your renewal premium is paid. Once we receive your renewal payment, your renewal bond/policy/continuation certificate will be sent to you to file with the obligee on the bond if necessary.
I am an agent with Internet bONdLINE (IBL) and I am also enrolled in your Direct Bill program. If I issue a bond on IBL and I uncheck the Direct Bill box on IBL for the bond, will the bond be agency billed for future renewals? Yes, if you are enrolled in our Direct Bill program and if you uncheck the Direct Bill box on IBL, the bond will not be direct billed for future renewals and instead, your agency will be responsible for billing the future renewals of the bond.
I am an agent of your Company and enrolled in your Direct Bill Program. Can I check online to see if my client has paid their bond premium? At this point, you cannot view payment information online. If you need information on a premium payment by your client, you can check your recent Direct Bill Payments Processed Reports or you can call 1-800-331-6053 and speak with an Underwriting Services Associate.
How long does it take to become enrolled in your Direct Bill program? Your current Agency Agreement must be updated to allow for Direct Bill. The new agreement needs to be signed and returned to CNA Surety prior to Direct Bill implementation. Once we receive your new signed agreement, we can begin to direct bill first year/original terms immediately if you choose that option and/or we will begin to direct bill your premiums for renewal terms that are approximately 120 days out.
Please Note: Once you are enrolled in our Direct Bill program and have decided upon your program options, all new bonds/policies are automatically set up to be direct billed at the first term or renewal term unless you instruct us otherwise at the time of issuance.
What information will my customer receive under your Direct Bill Program? Premium Notices - Your customer receives the first billing notice, Notice of Premium Due, approximately 60 days prior to the effective date of the renewal term on the bond/policy. If the bond/policy is not paid, a second notice, Final Notice of Premium Due, is sent approximately 30 days prior to the effective date of the renewal term on the bond/policy. This is the last invoice sent to your customer.
Renewal Documents - When payment is received for the bond or policy, any required renewal bond, policy or continuation certificate is sent directly to your customer with instructions for your customer to file the renewal documentation with the appropriate obligee. If the bond/policy is continuous, a renewal document will not be sent. If the renewal document requires your signature, we will forward it to you with instructions to sign and forward to your customer. This includes bonds, policies and continuation certificates. In these situations, your customer will receive a letter from us informing them the renewal document has been sent to their agent for a signature and will be sent to them when signed.
If I receive payment from my client on a direct bill item, can I submit payment on their behalf? Yes; please submit the payment for the gross amount due along with the direct bill payment stub to the following address:
Any commission due to you will then be returned with the monthly direct bill commission check.
If a bond/policy requires renewal documentation, when is that documentation sent to my customer? If renewal documentation, such as a bond, policy or continuation certificate is required, it is mailed out on a daily basis once payment is received.
Will I receive a copy of the renewal document when payment is received? You have the option of receiving copies of renewal documentation if you request this service. If you choose this option, you will receive copies of the renewal documentation either on a weekly or monthly basis. All original documents are mailed directly to your customer unless an agent’s signature is required on the renewal document. If a signature is required, the document is mailed to you to sign and forward to your customer. A letter is also sent to your customer advising them the renewal document was sent to you for your signature.
How will I know when payment was received on a direct bill item? If Direct Bill payments are made during the accounting period, a Direct Bill Payments Processed Report will be mailed to you along with your commission check. This report is mailed the first of every month and reflects payments for the previous month. If you have chosen the option to receive copies of renewal documentation, receiving your copies is also verification that a bond/policy has been paid for and renewed.
When will I receive my commission for a direct bill bond that was paid? The Direct Bill Payments Processed Report is sent to you on the first of the month along with your commission check for all payments received during the previous month.
Can I request a change on a bond that is on direct bill? Yes; if your customer contacts you to make a change to their bond/policy, simply submit your change request to us in writing by email, fax, or mail. In the event a change rider or endorsement is required to the bond/policy, that rider or endorsement will be sent directly to your customer with a copy to you for your records.
Can my customer request a change to their bond if it is on direct bill, and if so, where is the change documentation sent? Yes; if a change is required on a bond/policy that is direct billed; the request can come directly to us from your customer in writing. If additional underwriting information is required to make the change, we will request that information from you instead of your customer. Once the change request is approved, if a change rider or endorsement is required to the bond/policy, that rider or endorsement will be sent directly to your customer with a copy to you for your records.
When is a bond canceled for nonpayment of premium? If a bond/policy remains unpaid 14 days past the effective date of a renewal term, or if a bond/policy remains unpaid 45 days past the effective date of a first year/original term, it will appear on the Direct Bill Items to be Canceled Report. When a bond/policy is on this report, it will be cancelled for nonpayment of premium if it can be cancelled or transferred to collection if it cannot be canceled.
How are non-cancelable bonds handled if they remain unpaid? If we do not receive payment or a release on a non-cancelable bond, we will contact you asking if you would like the opportunity to collect on the bond and change the bond back to agency bill. If not, the bond will be sent to collection and you will relinquish your commission for any premium collected for that bond.
What happens if my customer submits payment on a bond that was canceled for nonpayment of premium? If the payment is received within a reasonable time after the cancellation was processed, the bond/policy may be reinstated at the discretion of Underwriting.
What happens if the bond is canceled after my customer pays the premium? If a return premium is being allowed, that amount will be refunded directly to your customer. If the commission for that bond/policy was already paid to your agency, your account will be charged back for that commission amount.
Do I have to direct bill all of my bonds? Our program is flexible to meet the needs of your agency. Our program was designed to direct bill your entire book of commercial bonds (contract bonds cannot be direct billed); however, you may request a list of the bonds/policies in force for your agency to be sent to you so you can indicate on that list any bonds/policies you do not want to direct billed. In addition, if you have a certain line or class of business you do not want to be direct billed, we can set up our program to bypass the direct bill process for that line or class of bonds/policies.
How do I know if a bond is being direct billed or agency billed? If a bond is agency billed, the renewal output is sent to the agents office at least 70 days prior to the renewal date. If a bond is direct billed, a billing invoice is sent to the principal approximately 60 days prior to the renewal date. The bond then appears on the agency report that is mailed weekly showing any bond that a first or final invoice has been sent on.