What Does a Bail Bondsman Do?
Bail bondsmen have been called many things, but people who don’t interact with them, or who have never done their job, don’t really understand what a bail bondsman’s job entails, or how they do it. In case you ever find yourself in need of a bail bondsman’s services to get out of jail, though, here’s a simple, straightforward explanation of their often misunderstood profession.
If you’ve never been arrested before, you’ve probably never had to post bail. The way the legal system works is that if someone is arrested for, and charged with, a crime, that person is arraigned in front of a judge. The judge will then set that person’s bail, which is an amount of money that person has to put up to be released from jail. Bail acts as an incentive for someone to show up to their court date, since they get that money back if they show up, but forfeit it if they try to run.
The Role of The Bail Bondsman
Bail is simple in concept, but it is often prohibitively expensive for people to post. The average person doesn’t have, say, $10,000 they can draw out of their savings account to hand over to the court. Even if they will get it back at some point.
That’s where bail agents come into play.
If you cannot afford your bail, you pay a fee to a bail agent. This fee is typically a small percentage of your overall bail. You don’t get this fee back, but the bail bondsman then posts a surety bond, which gets you released from jail. Additionally, a bail bondsman often gets the accused released in hours, instead of the days that more traditional bail can take. From that point onward, you become the bail bondsman’s priority. He checks in with you, keeps appraised of your situation, and ensures you make your court dates. Because in order for the bondsman to get his bond back from the court, you have to make your court dates.
Where Does The Part Where They Hunt Down Bail Jumpers Come In?
When people think of bail bondsmen, they often picture a scene out of a reality TV show where a team of bounty hunters in black gear crash in through the front door of a house on the wrong side of town, chasing after their quarry. That’s because the “sexy” part of the job (which is also the dangerous part most bail bondsmen would prefer to avoid if at all possible) is, in fact, chasing down clients they’ve posted bail for who make a run for it.
However, that part of the job is done by third parties. The bail bondsman often works with them, but tracking down people who’ve run on bail is not a bail agent’s job.
If a regular person posts bail, and then doesn’t make their court appearances, their bail is forfeited. Additionally, the police will find them, arrest them, and bring them back to jail. When a bail bondsman covers someone’s bail, the same rules apply to them. Which is why the bondsman will work with an organization to find the individual, and typically remand them to the care of the court (meaning they go back to jail). At that point the bail bond agency can recoup their loss, because if they can’t bring their clients to heel, they lose out on the bond they posted.
Which is why bail bondsmen take such an interest in ensuring their clients make all their court dates.
Bail Bondsmen Are Here To Help You
Bail bondsmen provide a service to those who need a hand getting out of jail so they can better plan their defense, and continue on living their lives. Everyone makes mistakes, and a bail agency should be active in working with their clients. That said, it’s important to know a bail bond isn’t a get out of jail free card; they’re going to be watching you until your case is taken care of, and everything is settled in court.
For more information on bail bonds, and those who serve them, simply contact us today! 8-Ball Bail Bonds charges the state minimum fee, and we are here to represent our clients’ best interests.