‘Bail’ is a term that is used to describe a set amount of money that acts as insurance between the person in jail, i.e. the defendant, and the court. Defendants have the option to pay for their bail using their own cash, however, most people cannot afford to do so. As bail is often set at such a high amount, defendants need to use a bail bond service. This means they will seek financial aid from a bail bondsman, otherwise known as a bail agent, who will post the bail on behalf of them. Read on to discover more about this service and how it operates.
Understanding what a bail bond is
This is a form of surety bond, which is given by a bail bond business via a bail bondsman, which will secure the defendant’s discharge from jail. Two bail bond types exist. The first is what is known as a civil bail bond, which is used in civil cases. This will guarantee the debt payment, as well as any costs and interest, assessed against the defendant. The other type of bail bond is a criminal bail bond, which, as the name indicates, is utilized in criminal cases. This bond is used for guaranteeing that the individual will turn up for trial when the court calls upon them. It guarantees payment for any penalties or fines that are decided against the defendant.
How does a bail bond work?
The judge will set the bail amount. Should the defendant not be able to pay the bail amount using their own funds, they can look for help from a bail bondsman in the form of a bail bond. For a bail bond to be posted, the defendant is typically required to pay a deposit to the bail bondsman, which is usually 10 percent of the bail amount. The bail bondsman is then going to secure the remaining bail amount using collateral. Should the defendant not have enough collateral, the bail bonds agent may seek out friends and relations for assistance in covering the bail. In many cases, collateral and extra cash payment will be required for a bail bond to be posted.
What happens after this is dependent on whether or not the defendant appears in court once he or she has been released. Should the defendant turn up for court, the bail bond will be dissolved and the person who posted the collateral will receive it back. However, the bail bondsman is going to keep the 10% cash fee as profit. Should the defendant fail to turn up to court, the bail bond will be forfeited. In this case, the court will demand that the rest of the bail is paid, i.e. the 90%. The defendant’s collateral will be used by the bail bondsman to pay the remaining bail amount to the court.
So there you have it: an insight into bail bonds and how they work. We hope that this has cleared up the subject for you.