When an individual is arrested, he or she may be released from jail until the trial date by paying a specified amount of bail. Bail serves as a financial guarantee that the arrestee will not flee before his or her trial. Paying bail lets individuals work, enjoy time with their families, and be productive citizens while they wait for their court appearance. When one's bond is high enough that paying it is a financial hardship, a bail bond service is a convenient option.
The Importance of Making Bail
The time between an individual's arrest and trial date can take weeks or even months if the courts are flooded with cases. Without the possibility of bond, individuals cannot work, raise their children, or tend to their personal matters. Spending months in jail awaiting trial can result in the loss of one's job, making it difficult for the arrestee to meet his or her financial obligations.
Types of Bail
There are two types of bail: cash bonds and surety bonds. When the arrestee pays the entire bail amount using cash or a credit card, this is considered a cash bond. Property may be used in some instances in lieu of cash.
A surety bond is issued through a bail bond service like A Bail Now Bail Bonds, Inc. The bail bond service posts the entire amount of the bail, while the responsible party only has to pay a small percentage. For example, if bail is set at $20,000, the responsible party pays $2,000 and the bail bonds service covers $18,000. There are varying fees and charges associated with this option.
The amount of the bail (less any applicable fees) is refunded once the arrestee makes his or her court appearance. If the arrested individual fails to appear in court, the full amount of his or her bond is forfeited. When this occurs, the party who signed the agreement with the bail bond service is responsible for paying the entire amount.
Paying the Bail
Though the arrestee can always make his or her own bail payment or personally sign the bail bond agreement, it is also permissible for friends and family to do so. This is common in situations where the arrestee is deemed a poor credit risk. The bail bond service may require a cosigner who is held legally liable for the full amount of the bond should the defendant skip his or her court date.
Whether it is a friend, relative, or yourself who needs to post bond, it is vital to stay calm. A bail bond business is a helpful service for those who cannot meet the full amount themselves. With a bit of time and a little paperwork, defendants can resume their lives while they await their trials.