Some states require a surety bond for your sweepstakes prizes and a registration of the sweepstakes with their gaming agency. This article will share information about the registration and bonding process.
What states require registration and bonding?
If the total prize value of all prizes is greater than $5,000, a surety bond and registration is required to include residents of these states in the drawing.
- New York – All sweepstakes
- Florida – If the sponsor (your organization) is not a 501(c) organization
If your sweepstakes prize value is less than $5,000, you will not be required to register or bond it in any state.
How can I avoid registering and bonding my sweepstakes?
Should you wish to forego this step, you may choose to exclude New York (and/or Florida) residents from your sweepstakes. Our approvals team will reach out to you after you publish your drawing to confirm the rules.
When should I register and bond my sweepstakes?
Your experience must be completely set up before acquiring the bond. No changes to the experience are allowed once the bond is obtained.
How much does it cost?
The cost of registering a charity sweepstakes in each state is $100 (plus any express shipping fees), and the price of a surety bond is 2% of the value of the prize(s) (plus any express shipping fees). Therefore, if you need to register and bond in New York and Florida, you will need to acquire two separate bonds.
What is the process for registering and bonding my sweepstakes?
Givebacks (formerly MemberHub) will provide you with all the information you need to navigate the registration and bonding process. It may seem daunting, but it is a relatively straightforward process.
1. Acquire the bond.
We will introduce you to our partner, who can help you acquire the bond. They have a simple form for you to fill out and can usually get the bond completed on the same day. They can overnight the bond to you and send an invoice for all charges.
2. Sign and notarize the bond
Once you receive the bond in the mail, you will need to have it signed and notarized before sending it off to the state to register your sweepstakes.
3. Fill out the state registration form.
A registration form for each state must be filled out and mailed in with a check for $100.
4. Send all information to the state.
Send the following information to the state to register your drawing:
- Printed copy of official rules – (Givebacks will provide a PDF copy for you)
- Notarized surety bond
- Signed registration form
- Check for $100
We recommend sending this packet with a return receipt or some way to track that it was received. Once proof that the state received the package, contact us, and we will be able to approve and make your fundraiser live.