The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) is one of the largest unions in North America, with local chapters across the United States and Canada. The IBEW seeks to protect the benefits, wages, and rights of its workers. One of the ways local unions do this is through the Wage and Welfare Bond (aka Union Bond or Electrical Contractor Surety Bond), which provides a guarantee of the payment of wages or fringe benefits if the employer fails to comply with the obligations indicated in the Collective Bargaining Agreement.
The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers has members in Canada as well, but Jet Insurance Company is serving local chapters that are in the United States at this time.
Bond limits vary depending on the Collective Bargaining Agreement that the local chapter uses with employers. Some may have a set limit, while others use a calculation based on the number of union workers you hire or how many hours they work.
The cost of the Wage and Welfare depends largely on the bond limit that the local chapter of the IBEW requires. Regardless of the limit, you will only have to pay a small portion of the limit to purchase your bond; rates can start as low as $250 and are based on credit.
|Bond Limit||Monthly Cost||1-Year Cost|
|Up to $10,000||$20||$200|
If the bond limit is under $10,000, a rate will be provided at the end of the application. If greater than $10,000, a quote will be provided following an underwriter’s review.
Although the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers put in the work to gain fair wages and benefit funds set up for their members, all of it is for nothing if the employer doesn’t hold up their end of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Another safety measure was needed to ensure that electrical workers will receive the wages and benefits they worked for: the Wage and Welfare Bond.
On an employer’s failure to provide a paycheck, pay union dues, or contribute to a vacation fund, pension fund, or trust fund, the union can seek due payment via the Wage and Welfare Bond. In short, the bond financially protects the union and its members.
Applying for the IBEW Union Bond is easy through Jet’s online application. You’ll need to provide which local chapter is requiring the bond, relevant business information, and a social security number. A credit check is part of the bond application process, but don’t worry, it has no effect on your credit score.
Once you’ve completed the application, it will be submitted for review (unless your limit is under $10,000—in that case, a quote will be ready for you). A Jet team member will reach out to you for any additional information that may be needed. When you’ve been approved for rate, they will be sent to you by email with a link that you can click to purchase your bond.
After payment, Jet will prepare your bond form and mail it over to you (a digital copy will be emailed to you along with a receipt of purchase). Once you have the Union Bond, you will need to sign it. In some cases, like the Florida IBEW Local Union 349, a witness signature is also required.
When all signatures have been placed on the bond, it can be submitted to the local chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. You can use the Local Union Directory to find the address needed.
Oftentimes, the employer of an electrical worker is a contractor. In addition to a Wage and Welfare Bond that is needed when hiring union members, the contractor will typically need a Contractor License Bond.