I just had a nice conversation on the phone with a lady who was in a hurry to get a quote on a fidelity bond. It turned out that one of her company's subcontractors had failed to acquire a required bond by their deadline—today—and she had been assigned to expedite their foot-dragging.
I had two comments to offer.
First, nobody is going to quote a fidelity bond in a day. Why not? A fidelity bond is a guarantee that the bonded party will not get away with cheating their client. Naturally, the issuer of the bond will want to do a little checking around to make sure that the applicant hasn't cheated anybody in the past. This takes time... typically as much as a week or two.
Secondly, and I think far more important, is this question: Why is this contractor dragging his feet?
It may simply be a matter of expense... but it's also possible that your contractor may have a skeleton or two in his closet. A fidelity bond issuer will typically be reluctant to issue a bond to a firm with a previous fidelity claim, and with good reason.
The bottom line: if your contractor is reluctant to obtain a fidelity bond, make a few phone calls and check a few references. An hour's investment may save you a pile of grief down the road.
You can shop for Fidelity Bonds online at e-Insure Services!