Four Things You Need To Know About How Bail Bonds Work

Posted on: 1 June 2016

Getting a call late at night from a friend or family member who has been arrested can be a scary thing. The first thing you want to do is get them out of there and home so you can sort out what to do next. You will generally have to post bail in order for the person to be released. The bail amount is set by the court and varies depending on the seriousness of the crime he or she is charged with and his or her past criminal history (if any). A bail bond company can be a big help in such situations. However, it's important to understand how bail bond companies work before you sign a contract with them.

1. The bail bond company may be open 24/7, but the court is probably not. Although a bail bond company may advertise that they are open 24/7, that doesn't mean they can get your son, husband or friend out of jail at 2:00 a.m. In most all cases, the person who has been arrested must first be arraigned in front of a judge and have bail set by the court before he or she can be released. If the person was arrested on a Friday night or on a holiday weekend, it may be several days before he or she is arraigned.

2. A bail bond could cost you more than 10 percent...a lot more. While a bail bond company will generally post the full bond for a payment of just 10 percent of the total, you must guarantee that you'll pay the company if the person fails to show up for his or her court date and the bail company has to forfeit the bond they posted. 

3. Bail bond companies aren't available in every state. There are a handful of states where bail bond companies are not permitted to do business. In these states, courts will generally accept a 10 percent deposit on bail for all except the most serious crimes.

4. You may be asked for collateral for large bond amounts. If the bail is very high, such as when someone is charged with murder, the bail bond company will likely ask you to put up real estate or personal property as collateral in case the person fails to show up in court as required. That means if the person skips town, you'll lose the property that you assigned to the bail bond company.

Bail bond companies can help make posting bail more affordable. However, it's important to understand how bail bond companies work before entering into any agreement.

For more information, contact a company like All-Mobile Bail Bonds.