The Bail Bonds Process

Being arrested is not only a burden and concern for the person involved, but for their friends and family as well. Unless someone can afford to pay the full bail amount out of pocket, a friend or family member will have to secure the services of a bail bondsman in order to get the person out of jail.

A bail bondsman is either in business for themselves, or works as an agent for a bail bond company. Bail bondsmen make their living off the 10%-15% fee they can charge for posting a defendant’s bail. Here is an outline of how the bail bond process works.

3 Steps for Getting Someone out of Jail

1.    Finding a reliable bail bondsman. If a friend or family member has contacted you to bail them out of jail, your first instinct will be to act as quickly as possible to get them out from behind bars. First of all, it’s important to relax and act deliberately. This person is destined to spend at least a few hours in prison anyway as the bail bonds process takes place.

The best thing you can do to help your loved one is to carefully research the options. There are many reputable and professional bond companies out there, and many unpleasant ones as well. You’re loved one will be dealing with this person until their case is settled, so choosing a bail bonds company that is professional and knowledgeable is crucial.
The Internet is a great place to look for reviews. Once you have found some well-recommended options, call each one and ask them questions. Make sure you are comfortable with the agent you will be working with.

2.    Reaching an agreement. Once you have found a reputable bail bondsman that you are comfortable with, someone will have to pay a nonrefundable fee that is 10% or 15% of the total bail amount. This is the bond agreement. Some bondsmen require a cosigner to vouch for the defendant and offer up something valuable as collateral incase the defendant jumps bail.

3.    Getting the defendant out of jail. Once the fee has been paid, the bondsman will notify the court that he has agreed to terms with a new client. Bondsmen have a long-standing loan agreement with the court known as a blanket bond that allows them to bail out several defendants simultaneously for less money than their original bail amount. When the bondsman signs a new client, this person is included into the bondsman’s standing blanket bond agreement.

The bondsman or the court clerk will hand the defendant a notification that the bail has been paid, once the defendant shows the slip to the judge, they will be released on bail.

As part of the bail bond agreement, the defendant will have to comply with all their legal requirements or they will be in violation of their bail and be forced to pay the full bail amount and sit in jail until their court date.

Posted by Javi Calderon, on March 30, 2012 at 1:22 PM