Auctioneers and auction firms that want to operate in Ohio have to obtain a license that allows their legal conducting of business.
The Ohio auctioneer license process entails meeting a number of requirements set by state authorities. Their purpose is to ensure applicants’ suitability and trustworthiness for the job.
Among the criteria you have to meet to get licensed is posting an auctioneer bond. It guarantees your legal compliance, thus protecting your customers.
Here are all the facts you should keep in mind when starting your licensing as an Ohio auctioneer or auction firm.
The Ohio auctioneer license requirements
Aspiring auctioneers have to first start their careers as apprentices. You need to undergo an apprenticeship for one year. The exact rules that you have to follow are set in the Ohio Revised Code, Chapter 4707.09. You also have to pass successfully the apprenticeship licensing exam, as well as having participated as a bid caller in at least 12 auctions. You would not need an apprenticeship in case you’ve operated in another state, which has a reciprocity licensing agreement with Ohio.
The licensing documents for both apprenticeship and different types of regular licenses are available on the website of the Ohio Department of Agriculture, which is the licensing body in the state.
When you’ve passed the apprenticeship phase, or have gotten a legitimate waiver to skip it, you can go on to apply for an auctioneer license. You can choose between a regular auctioneer licence, auction firm license, special auctioneer license, and corporation, partnership, or association auctioneer license. The procedure is slightly different for each of them.
For all license types, however, you need to provide the following:
- Completed application form (for the respective license type)
- Auctioneer license applicants have to pass a state-approved auctioneer license. Exams are conducted four times every year.
- Pay the biennial licensing fee – $200 for all license types but the auction firms, which have to pay $100
- Meet the bonding requirements – $25,000 bond for auctioneer and corporation, partnership, or association auctioneer license and $50,000 for auction firm license
Getting your surety bond
One of the licensing requirements for both auctioneers and auction firms is to obtain a surety bond. The bond amounts are $25,000 and $50,000 respectively. The purpose of the bond is to guarantee that you will follow all applicable state rules, as set in the Ohio Revised Code and other relevant legislation. A claim can be filed against your bond in case you transgress from your legal obligations.
You don’t have to cover the whole bond amount to get bonded. In fact, you only have to pay a small percentage of it, which is the actual surety bond price. It is formulated on the basis of the strength of your personal and business finances. If your overall profile is stable, you can expect bond premiums in the range of 1% to 5%. For a $50,000 bond, this can mean a bond cost as low as $500.
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The license and bond renewal
The licensing period for Ohio auctioneers runs for two years. This means that your license and bond expire on June 30 biennially. In odd-numbered years, licensees with last names or corporation, partnership or association with names beginning with A to J and X to Z are due to renew their licenses. The rest of the names starting with K to W have to renew in even-numbered years.
In order to renew your license, you have to pay the renewal fee, which is $100 or $200, depending on the license type that you hold. Together with this, you have to submit your set of renewal documents as well. One of the most important ones is your surety bond, which also needs to be renewed every two years.
It’s important to comply with the renewal deadlines, as otherwise you may risk your right to operate in the state. Even if you are late but manage to undergo the renewal before September 1 of the year in which your renewal is due, you can still continue your activities without a break. However, you will need to pay an additional late fee of $100.
Do you still have questions about getting your Ohio auctioneer license, or renewing your auctioneer bond? Our bonding specialists are here to help. Just contact us at 866.450.3412.