A bail bond is a non-refundable payment to a bail agent and company that gets a person out of jail. This person has not yet stood trial; bail bond releases are not allowed for those who have been found guilty and sentenced to prison. Here are common bail bond rules to keep in mind:
- The bail amount is set by the judge based on the crime, the person’s criminal history and their ties to the community.
- The defendant, or someone on their behalf, must contact the bail company to discuss the situation and get a bail bond. Bail bond companies will not be the ones to initiate and reach out to the defendant.
- The bail agent does not have the authority to lower bail, nor can he or she request the judge to re-evaluate the bail amount.
- The defendant is required to show up at all court appointments. If he or she does not, the court forfeits the bail bond. The bail agent will then need to return the defendant to custody.
- If the defendant failed to show up at court, the bail agent will have to pay off the full bail amount. In order to protect the bail agent though, there is usually a co-signer on the bail bond. The co-signer then, would be responsible for paying, including relinquishing any collateral that was pledged. The co-signer also has rights and can withdraw his or her name from the bail bond at anytime.
Bail bonds are much easier to pay for release than paying 100% of the bail to court. While there are stipulations, they’re still easier to comply with.