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Associate In Fidelity And Surety Bonding (AFSB) Definition
The Associate in Fidelity and Surety Bonding is a professional designation awarded to those individuals who successfully complete the five national examinations. Three of the five exams are designed for the AFSB program, while the other two are for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter exams.
The designation is awarded by the Insurance Institute of America (IIA). The IIA is a non-profit organization providing educational programs and credentials for insurance in the United States.
A Little More on What is an Associate In Fidelity And Surety Bonding (AFSB)
Fidelity and surety bonding is a field of insurance where a single party insures itself against the risk that the other party is likely to refrain from taking action or fail in completing the action as promised. Surety bonds involve three different parties, whereas fidelity bonds refer to the insurance policies involving only two parties.
The development of AFSB designation program was designed with the technical assistance and encouragement of the following bodies:
- National Association of Surety Bond Producers also known as BASBP
- The Surety Association of America also known as SAA
The AFSB program is designed for any person who works surety and fidelity bonding industry or for individuals who aspire to become work in that industry. The training and test for AFSB credential from the Insurance Institute of America and Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter is an indication that the holder practical knowledge of:
- Surety contracts
AFSB Designation Course and Exam Requirements
The AFSB has the following courses and exam requirements:
The AFSB designation comprises of five core introductory courses. They are as follows:
- AFSB 151-Principles of suretyship
- AFSB 152-Contact Surety
- AFSB 153-Commercial Surety, Financial Institution bonds, and Crime Insurance
- CPCU-530- Business Law for Insurance Professionals
- CPCU-540-Finance and Accounting for Insurance Professionals
- Ethics311-Ethical Guidelines for Insurance Professionals or 312- Ethics and the CPCU Code of Professional Conduct
Course and Examination Requirements and Duration
AFSB designation is a self-taught or instructor-led class program. An applicant is required to complete five basic courses. Leaning material for the courses can be obtained from test-taking authority.
Note that the course material is not free, meaning that the applicant has to pay for it. It is also important to note that the institute does not require an individual to possess a higher education or experience for him or her to obtain the AFSB designation.
It takes about 15-21 months for a person to complete the five courses. Every course has a test that a candidate is required to pass. Exams for each course take about two to three hours for a candidate to complete. The administration of exams is done in the form of essays or multiple choices.
The administration of all the exams is through computer and continuing education. Note that coursework is not a requirement. Candidates who pass the AFSB exams qualify to earn credit in either Associate in Insurance Services or Associate in General Insurance designations.
To obtain an AFSB designation, an applicant must also meet the ethics requirements. For instance, it is mandatory for the person applying for the designation to do and pass the fifty question exam on one of the following:
- Ethical guidelines for insurance professionals
- Ethics and the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter code of professionals conduct
Benefits of Associate in Fidelity and Surety Bonding
The AFSB designation has the following benefits to the holders:
- It helps an individual to build a strong foundation of knowledge in fidelity bonding practices and principles in conjunction with the Institute Associations and regulation. The holder will be in a position to serve the client’s needs in a better way
- It helps individuals to increase knowledge and advance their careers
- Besides the in-depth knowledge in areas such as finance, business law, and accounting, AFSB designation is considered premier for all underwriters and bond producers. The AFSB program is recommended for the following positions:
- Bond Underwriters
- Claim adjusters
- Bond Producers
- It prepares individuals to reach their long term goals as far as their careers are concerned. (better career opportunities and much better salary package)
- It gives the holder a competitive edge in the surety industry. It makes the holder be a more competitive advantage in the job market. This is because AFSB is the only professional designation in the industry
- It enables the holder to become more effective when it comes to advocating for the clients. The designation puts an individual in a better position where he or she can effectively communicate and negotiate with underwriters on behalf to clients
- It gives individual additional information and expertise in the insurance industry
- The AFSB designation helps those working in the industry to invest their knowledge as well as ability so that they can positively impact the industry. In general, AFBS designation is an investment in the insurance industry’s future as well as in the surety product in terms of value and perception to the end-user