The question is, "How do I obtain a bail bond?" Answer: It's simple and it's quick - it may take only 30 minutes, at the most. We'll need some information from you, such as, what is your relation to the person in jail, how long have you lived in your current place of residence, and how long have you been at your present job? This gives us a good understanding of you - the potential signer for the defendant in jail. Sometimes we may ask for collateral depending upon the bond amount, the security risk of the defendant and the financial strength of the signer. It's really very simple. Remember, bailing people out of jail is all we do! FACT: A bondsman guarantees to the court that the person will appear to face his/ or her charge.
THE BASIC STRUCTURE OF A BOND
There are two parts to a bond. The 10% fee ( DOES NOT APPLY TO CASH ONLY BONDS ), which is the fee charged to the customer and is based on the full bond amount of the bond. This can be paid with a credit card, check, cash or if necessary - we'll help you with a short term loan, if necessary. Next, the full value of the bond needs to be collateralized. This can be accomplished in many ways and much of the time you don't have to use your house, or come up with large amounts of cash, or pledge other assets. We can also do a signature bond, which means that no collateral is taken; we've based our decision on the merits of the bond and the financial strength of the signer. The real issue in obtaining a bond is that you talk straight to the bondsman, be realistic about your ability to pay, and understand the need to get that person to court, because you are accepting the full financial responsibility for them should they forfeit. Again, the total process may take only 30 minutes.
WHAT HAPPENS TO THE PERSON WHO JUST GOT ARRESTED?
This question is frequently asked by those who are for the first time faced with helping a person get out of jail. First, the arrestee is taken to a holding facility and the person is 'booked in'. This booking process involves fingerprinting, the so-called mug-shot, and a search to find if any outstanding warrants exit. The charges are confirmed, the bail amount set, and last, a court date and time is set before release. This process may take a few hours. If no outstanding warrants exist and this is not a capital crime (murder), the person is eligible for bail.
WHAT IS AN O.R. OR RELEASE ON OWN RECOGNIZANCE (ROR)?
Own Recognizance is an unsecured, government backed, release of a defendant on the promise the he/she will return to court at the appointed time and place. If he/ or she is eligible for an O.R. the review staff at the jail will assess each person on the following merits: The type of alleged crime, The immediate family's support (whether they live in the immediate community) The defendant's past criminal history The defendant's job history, both current and present, within that community. Each defendant can provide to the assessment team various people who can speak well of them and verify his/or her status in the community. Each will be interviewed by phone. If an O.R. is granted there is no need for a bail bondsman; however, this does not dismiss the defendant from making all court appearances.
WHAT ABOUT A FORFEITURE?
Just What Happens When a Forfeiture Occurs? This seems to be an area that most people don't understand very well. The action of forfeiture is when a person does not make their court appearance. Although it can compromise the bail agreement and the court's view of the defendant, it can be solved sometimes very simply. We know things can go wrong and failing to appear in court at the appropriate time and place - happens. And yes, a bench warrant will be issued, but remember, a bail bond company can be a good friend in many cases. We know the court system and can suggest your best approach with the courts. So, if your person fails to go to court, please inform us immediately. We work for you - our valued customer. What Does Exoneration Mean and When Am I Released From My Financial Responsibility? Exoneration of charges is the full release of a person from his / her court cases, which means that a person has appeared in court at all required times and has satisfied the court with regards to the final sentencing /determination on all charges. The court will then release the bail company from all financial responsibility. This means you, as the signer, will also be released from financial responsibility on the bond. Any collateral held, any monies pledged, or any property recorded for this bond will be returned. (Some fees may be deducted - each bond is different).
Q. How long is a bond valid?
A. A bond is valid as long as the case lasts. If the case lasts for more than a year, but not more than 2 years, the bond company is entitled to another full premium (the 10% fee). The same bond continues until the case is completed.
Q. Is a bail bond company the only option available to get someone out of jail - what other options exist?
A. No. Here are three different approaches:
Pay the court / jail all cash. The court will refund all the money after the case is completed less any fees or outstanding fines due the court - you will be advised on these deductions.
A US Treasury Bond is also recognized by some courts.
Real Property. The court will ask for an appraisal of the property and this may take some time to acquire and submit to the court.
Q. What's the difference between a public defender and /or an attorney - why use one over the other?
A. A public defender is appointed to a defendant who does not have the financial ability to retain an attorney - this is the basic difference.