If you have ever been arrested or have had a friend or family member arrested, you know that it can be an unnerving and stressful experience. In the United States, judges are allowed to set bail amounts for those who have been arrested so that they can be released from jail while awaiting their day in court. The amount of bail that must be paid in order to earn one’s freedom can range from several hundred to thousands of dollars. However, bail bonds can usually be obtained for a small percentage of the overall bail amount.
Understanding the Role of a Bail Bond Agent
A bondsman is an individual or company that will act as a surety and pledge property or money as collateral that the individual will make his or her appearance in court on the appropriate date. While institutions such as banks and insurance companies will often provide funds to an individual in the form of loans or other arrangements, they are reluctant to provide money for a risky venture such as the promise that a person will appear in court. A bondsman, however, is in the business of catering to criminal defendants, and their clients’ release can often be secured within a few hours of their arrests. The bail bond is usually presented to the court in the form of a check on the arrested person’s behalf. As previously mentioned, this action is to assure the court that the arrested individual will appear at his or her hearing. However, if the person fails to appear at the appropriate time and place, the court can legally cash the bondsman’s check, causing the latter to lose that amount of money.
Purchasing Bail Bonds
To purchase a bail bond, the detained individual must have a friend or family member who is willing to visit a bondsman and pay the fees associated with the bond. This is commonly referred to as cosigning. Fees for bail bonds are determined by the company, but such fees are typically ten percent of the total amount of the bail set by the judge. This fee is nonrefundable, regardless of whether or not the person appears at his or her scheduled hearing.
Although a person may have enough money to post bail in full at the jail, buying a bond from a bondsman is often a more desirable course of action, as one does not have to part with a large lump sum of money. In certain cases, such as when a person is arrested out-of-state, posting bail can be a long and complicated process. However, a friend or loved one can call a bail bonds company in the state where the arrest took place and complete the process online or over the phone. All individuals must decide for themselves if seeking the services of a bondsman is an appropriate course of action, but in most cases such help will expedite and simplify one’s release from jail in the unfortunate event that he or she is arrested.
Kyle Carter is an avid blogger and professional bail bondsman with C&K OKC Bail Bonds in Oklahoma City. Kyle is passionate about sharing information online through his blogs, on youtube, and provides local bail bonds services in OKC to the local community.