The U.S. General Services Administration has issued an order to accept e-signatures for surety bonds to allow infrastructure projects to move forward. Working together with the National Association of Surety Bond Producers (NASBP) and the Surety & Fidelity Association of America (SFAA), NECA signed on to a letter to the United States General Services Administration (GSA) that led to the agency issuing a critical Order: Class Deviation – Flexibilities for Signatures and Seals on Bonds. The order, issued on April 6, 2020, will allow vendors and sureties to use electronic signatures in lieu of manual signatures and eliminate the requirement for any seals on the surety bonds. The GSA stated in their revisions to FAR, “neither requirement is conducive nor beneficial during times of emergency or crisis such as those presented by the Novel Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19 pandemic).”
The order is effective immediately and remains in effect until rescinded or incorporated into the FAR and GSAR.