When you’re looking into getting surety bonds for your construction business, especially if you’re working on state projects, you may hear about the requirements you have to meet under your state’s Little Miller Act. This term can come as a surprise to many small businesses, who may not be sure what it means, or what they have to do in order to qualify. Learn about the Little Miller Act, its relation to the federal Miller Act, and how it affects construction project bonding requirements for your business.
What Is a Little Miller Act?
A Little Miller Act is a state statute that is based upon the federal Miller Act. This is an act in Title 40 of the U.S. code that requires prime contractors on select government contracts to be properly bonded to guarantee their performance of contractually-agreed duties, and to properly pay subcontractors and suppliers of materials. The Miller Act, in 1935, superseded the original Heard Act of 1894.
Individual states have enacted statutes based upon the Miller Act, adding additional or revised provisions that apply specifically to state government contracts. They exist to address major concerns regarding state government contracts: performance and payment bonds that hold contractors accountable for the work they perform.
What Are Little Miller Requirements?
The requirements of a state Little Miller Act vary widely from state to state, so you should check your state’s government bonding regulations to determine the rules in your area. However, typical provisions include the requirement to carry performance bonds and payment bonds to guarantee your performance of your duties, as well as properly paying subcontractors and material suppliers.
Which projects to which these requirements apply are widely variant from state-to-state. In Alabama, for example, performance bonds are required for all public works projects contracted for at least $50,000 and must cover all of the contract price. In Georgia, performance bonds are required for public works and construction projects contracted for greater than $100,000 and must cover double the amount of the contract, at minimum.
What Aspects of Bonds and Performance to Statutes Cover?
Again, this differs from place to place, but typically, Little Miller bonds can be required for performance bonds, payment bonds, entitlements to copy bonds, state codes relating to enforcement of the statute, limitations, requirements to provide notice and other issues.
Remaining in Compliance with Little Miller Acts
In the end, regardless of whether your state’s Little Miller Act requires you to carry bonding, it’s always a good idea. Indeed, if you’re seeking to bid on government contracts, you’ll need to have the right guarantees in place. National Surety Services, Inc., offers full surety bonding programs to businesses in all 50 states and we’re here to greatly ease the process.
We offer the full SBA bonding package straight from our website, and we can help to guide you through the process of remaining in compliance with all federal, state and local regulations to allow your business to compete at the highest levels. If you’re looking to grow your contracting business, and compete with larger companies on government contracts, get in touch and learn how NSSI can help you today!