Surety Bonds

State Bar of Wisconsin

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Surety Bond Policies - New!


M3 Insurance logoThe State Bar of Wisconsin is pleased to provide you with everything you need to practice law at your  fingertips. CapSpecialty logo

Expanded surety bond coverage to cover a variety of client or business needs is just a click away.


Surety Bonds - New!

What is a Surety Bond?

A surety bond or surety is a promise by a surety or guarantor to pay one party (the obligee) a certain amount if a second party (the principal) fails to meet some obligation, such as fulfilling the terms of a contract. The surety bond protects the obligee against losses resulting from the principal’s failure to meet the obligation. Below is a list of bond types that are common to the legal industry, other bond needs may be considered under this program.

  • Court Bonds (Appeal, Attachment, Bankruptcy Trustee, Injunction, Receivership, Release of Lien, Replevin, Sheriff Indemnity, TRO)
  • Probate Bonds (Administrator, Conservator, Guardian, Trustee)
  • Notary Bonds (individual)
  • Notary E&O (individual or business blanket)
  • Title Agency/Agent Bond

Surety Bond:

The application process for surety bonds is essentially the same as for the criminal package coverage with one exception: the receipt of the surety bond. An executed surety bond requires the raised corporate seal with an original signature. If you need the surety bond immediately, overnight charges will be added to the overall surety bond invoice.

How do I apply?


Due to the sensitive and personally identifiable nature of the information contained in these applications, please ensure you are using an encrypted email service if you submit an application electronically. Alternatively, you may fax or mail your application.


Questions and Contact Information

Confact Information

Primary Contact – Surety Bonds:

Scott Donovan
Email: com sdonovan capspecialty capspecialty sdonovan com

Secondary Contact – Crime & Surety:

Travis Schreiber
Email: com travis.schreiber m3ins m3ins travis.schreiber com

Types of Surety Bonds

Probate Bonds:

  1. Estate Bonds: (aka Executor Bonds or Administrator Bonds)
    • Purpose: An estate bond is a safeguard to ensure that the executor faithfully complies with the written wishes of the deceased.
    • Explanation: When a person dies or is disabled, often there is a legal document or will that details what is to be done with the deceased’s estate. When this happens, either the document or the court will appoint someone called the executor to distribute the assets of the estate according to the written wishes of the deceased.

      The estate bond acts like an insurance policy. The executor purchases the bond from a company that will compensate the beneficiaries of the will for any negligent or intentional bad acts of the executor. Some states require the executor of an estate to post an estate bond when the estate holder dies, as part of the distribution process. Estate bonds are usually purchased as a surety bond from an agency that deals specifically with those types of transactions. The executor or representative of the estate usually must apply for the bond amount, and can sometimes be subjected to a credit check.

  2. Guardian Bonds: (aka Conservator Bond)
    • Purpose: Guardianship bonds guarantee that the guardian will provide an honest accounting of the property that the child inherits. It's also a guarantee that the guardian will be faithful in carrying out his duties regarding other important decisions that they must make on behalf of the child. Guardianship bonds are also applicable to guardians of adults who have been adjudicated incompetent or are shown to be developmentally disabled.
    • Explanation: A guardian has to be appointed when the decedent leaves behind minor children with no surviving spouse, or, when the probate court is referred cases involving minor children where custody is not contested. The decedent often names a guardian in a will, but if the will is invalid, then the judge has to appoint one.
  3. Trustee Bonds:
    • Purpose: A trustee bond guarantees that the trustee will uphold the trust agreement, preserve the assets of the estate and properly distribute assets as directed by the trust instrument.
    • Explanation: A trustee, named or appointed by the court, is in charge of managing the financial affairs of the trust for the benefit of the beneficiaries.

      Some wills create a trust that goes into effect when the trust creator dies. A trustee, named or appointed by the court, is in charge of managing the financial affairs of the trust for the benefit of the beneficiaries. For example, the trustee may use his discretion to sell a house and distribute the proceeds, or manage brokerage and other accounts in the trust on behalf of the beneficiaries.

Court Bonds:

  1. Receivership Bonds:
    • Purpose:Is a type of court fiduciary bond that insures against any financial distress that may be incurred by a party as a result of a court appointment of a receiver.
    • Explanation: With the direction and order of the court, the court-appointed receiver is put in charge of the management, liquidation, and preservation of business and real property assets. Receivership Bonds must be posted in place before court-appointed receivers can proceed with their fiduciary obligations. Receivership Bonds must be posted in place before court-appointed receivers can proceed with their fiduciary obligations.
  2. Attachment Bonds: (aka Writ of Attachment Bonds)
    • Purpose: It guarantees that the plaintiff will pay all legal costs, fees and damages sustained, if the court decides the action or grounds for Attachment were not necessary. An Attachment Bond also ensures the debtor will receive back his/her property.
    • Explanation: With the direction and order of the court, the court-appointed receiver is put in charge of the management, liquidation, and preservation of business and real property assets. Receivership Bonds must be posted in place before court-appointed receivers can proceed with their fiduciary obligations.
  3. Bankruptcy Trustee Bonds:
    • Purpose: The bond guarantees the beneficiaries, especially the creditors, of the bankruptcy that the trustee will perform their duties and handle the affairs according to the rules of the court.
    • Explanation: It is required by bankruptcy courts in all states. A bankruptcy trustee is typically an individual that manages and liquidates assets of the bankruptcy petitioner according to the prescribed rules of the type of bankruptcy case that has been filed.
  4. Appeal Bonds: (aka Supersedeas Bond)
    • Purpose: Required if you need to appeal a decision or judgment in the court of law. An appeal bond ensures that you will pay any claims on the bond that can occur if you don’t have the funds available to pay the winning party as ordered by the court.
    • Explanation: It must be paid to the court or a third party to demonstrate good faith and intent to commit to the final ruling if the appellant loses. The appeal bond also serves as a safety net bond which helps protect the court from frivolous appeals or delaying tactics to avoid payment as these dishonest activities cost the court time and money.
  5. Release of Lien Bonds:
    • Purpose: The bond protects the party who filed the lien against the property and guarantees payment will be made to this party.
    • Explanation: Ownership of real estate cannot be transferred unless the property is free of liens.
  6. Replevin Bonds: (aka Sequestration or Claim and Delivery Bond)
    • Purpose: Required by the plaintiff in a court of law to secure property from the defendant.
    • Explanation: The bond requirement is initiated by replevin, a court action allowing the plaintiff to take back property held by the defendant prior to trial. The bond guarantees to the defendant that the property will remain in its current condition and will not be sold or otherwise disposed. This protects the defendant in the event that the court rules in his or her favor and the property has been damaged.
  7. Injunction Bonds:
    • Purpose: Guarantees that the plaintiff will pay court fees, costs, and damages sustained by the defendant if the court decides the injunction should not have been granted.
    • Explanation: Should a defendant suffer damages due to an injunction and the plaintiff does not pay these damages, the defendant can make a claim on the bond.

Notary Bonds:

  • Purpose: Notary Bonds exist to protect the public from mistakes which notaries make while performing their duties.
  • Explanation: Notary publics are required by law to purchase and maintain a Notary Bond (Surety Bond). A notary public is a person licensed in his/her state who can legally approve and witness signatures on documents. A notary public can also administer oaths in depositions.

Title Agent / Agency Bonds:

  • Purpose: Guarantees title agencies perform their job in an honest manner, which applies to all functions in a title agency, including title searches, issuing and handling legal documents, title insurance and other tasks as requested by clients.
  • Explanation: A title agency bond gives assurance to the state that your company will comply with all state regulations for title agencies including preparing and issuing title documents as required by law.

What is the turn-around time to service Surety Bond Coverage Requests?

Twenty-four (24) hours following completed application during normal business hours.

About CapSpecialty

CapSpecialty has provided surety bonding since 1959 as a national underwriter of surety and fidelity bonds as well as specialty insurance products in commercial property and casualty and professional lines. CapSpecialty has an A (“Excellent”) rating from A.M. Best, and its operating entities are subsidiaries of Alleghany Insurance Holdings LLC, whose parent company, Alleghany Corporation, is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol “Y”). For more information about CapSpecialty, please visit: For more information about Alleghany, please visit:

About M3 Insurance

M3 Insurance offers insight, advice, and strategies to help clients manage risk, purchase insurance, and provide employee benefits. M3 Insurance has been in business for 50 years, grown to more than 260 employees, and placed over a billion dollars in annual premium. M3 Insurance is consistently ranked a top 100 broker in America by Business Insurance magazine.

The largest independent, privately owned insurance agency in Wisconsin, M3 has five offices throughout the state (Madison, Milwaukee, Eau Claire, Green Bay and Wausau) and in Rockford, IL, and is licensed to write business in all 50 states. For more information about M3 Insurance, visit

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