What is Bail and how do Bail Bonds work

how Bail Bonds work

In order to understand what a bail is and how Bail Bonds work you first need to understand how things may go down once you are arrested. When you are arrested for any charges upon you, the arresting officer may take you to the police station where you are booked. After you’re done being booked, they may give you an option for bail. By accepting this offer you may pay a certain bail payment and will be released. In case you are not given such an option then you must wait for a court hearing in jail, typically an arraignment. At an arraignment you are given the chance to make a plea and the judge will then decide whether you need to pay a bail to be released or you may be released without one too depending upon the decision that was taken.

An arraignment may occur within 48 hours of the arrest, however, if it doesn’t then you are more likely to be given a bail hearing. 

Do you need an attorney to post bail?

No, you may not require an attorney to post bail but it is better to call a lawyer or a bail bondsman to get you out temporarily. Do remember that this freedom is more likely to be temporary and once you are out, you still need to deal with your case. The priority is to get out of the local jail within several hours of the arrest for you to be able to deal with your case because if you end up in the county jail; things can get really worse for you. Being in jail is a very unfortunate event and you may want to avoid it at all costs. This is why going for a bail bondsman is a better option considering they can save you from the torture and mistreatment that may occur. 

In case your charges are very serious and may end up in prison or jail time, you have the right to counsel. Moreover, if you are being questioned, you may even require an attorney to be present for your case. 

What is Bail?

A Bail is a security payment in the form of money or property that is posted to a court based upon certain bail conditions. The payment has two main functions. The first function is to temporarily get you freedom until the trial date and the second is to ensure that you will not leave the town or skip the trial. It is a guarantee that you would not leave the place until your trial is conducted. In case you don’t show up then your property or money is forfeited by the court and an order for your arrest is set again. 

In other words, a bail is an agreement between the defendant and the court with an assurance that the defendant will return to court at an appointed time and may not leave the place without the permission of the court. Once the hearing is conducted and you appear according to the schedule, as per the bail bond agreement, you may get your money or property back. However in case you don’t manage to do so, the court will set out an arrest warrant and your guarantee money will be forfeited.

In other words, a bail is an agreement between the defendant and the court with an assurance that the defendant will return to court at an appointed time and may not leave the place without the permission of the court. Once the hearing is conducted and you appear according to the schedule, as per the bail bond agreement, you may get your money or property back. However in case you don’t manage to do so, the court will set out an arrest warrant and your guarantee money will be forfeited. 

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What can Bail Bonds Do?

Bail bonds have the ability to get you out of jail and help you in an emergency situation. Hiring a bondsman is more affordable than coming up with the cash that is required to get out. A bondsman will come to your immediate aid where you have been held. They have more chances to get you or any of your loved ones out especially if you have been arrested for a serious type of crime that you can’t easily get a bail for on your own.

After being arrested and having your vital information recorded normally a bail amount is set. Your hearing is scheduled and frequently while attending a hearing the judge may also consider your external circumstances and clear you of any bail unless you are arrested for a serious crime. If you are not, the judge may reduce your bail or even discard it. In low level offenses you’re more likely to be assigned a bail right after you are booked without waiting for an official hearing. In such cases bail bonds can act as personal loans. You put down a small percentage for your bail bonds agent and the agent provides the rest of the money that is required for your bail. This works quite similar to a loan officer that lends you a personal loan on certain conditions.Just like personal loans, most bail bond companies also require you to provide them with a collateral as a guarantee for the money they lend you for your bail. Most of the time this collateral is either a deed of your house or car and sometimes even jewelry. The main purpose of this collateral is to ensure that if you don’t show up on your appointed date at court then you may not receive the money lent by the bail bond back, therefore they may keep the collateral.

This also puts your bail bond agents at a financial risk as well. Therefore some companies may take additional measures in order to ensure that you attend the hearing dates of court timely. They need to ensure that they may receive their money back after the loan.

These additional measures may involve

  • Adding a relative or a friend as a collateral to your bail bond contract. This ensures that you attend the court dates considering your relatives or friends are on the line for payment in case you miss your court dates.
  • They may set up reminders for you. This involves visiting or calling you to remind you of your upcoming trail and ensure that you are going to attend it.
  • They may make it mandatory for you to make check-ins at their company’s office so that they can ensure that you haven’t left the place. 

Types of Bail Bonds

The different types of Bail Bonds include

  1. Surety Bonds: These types are secured by an insurance company. Most bail bondsmen ten to get their financial backing for insurance companies therefore it is pretty common for them to work with insurance companies.
  2. Property Bond: This type of bail bonds uses your own property as a collateral. They may not use cash and instead allow the court to put a lien on your property. Having a lien on your property means that if you don’t show up for the court’s dates, then the court can sell off your property as a collateral before issuing an arrest warrant again.
  3. Immigration bond: In case you are detained by an Immigration and Custom Enforcement, an bail bonds can ensure that you may be released until hearing
  4. Citation to appear in court: In cases where your officer catches you doing something illegal they may appeal for citation to appear in court rather than booking you for jail. 
  5. Release without bail: In cases on low level crimes or where the judge doesn’t consider you to be on a flight risk, you are likely to released without a bail
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In case you do not meet up with the contract of the bail bonds agent and your agent is unable to reach you, in such cases they may hire a person called the “Bounty Hunter”. A bounty hunter may track you down and ensure to bring you back into custody.

Why should you secure a Bail Bond?

Many times the amount required for your bail is higher than what your family or friends can afford. In such cases a Bail Bond can actually help you out faster. Do remember that the money paid out by the bail bondsman is much like a personal loan and they ensure that they get their money back. For this purpose they will ask for a non refundable fee that is 10 to 20 percent of your bail amount. So even if you have attended your court dates on time and they do get their bail money back, the fee that you have paid them for it is non refundable. So make sure to go for a bondsman with a low premium or fee. So in case you are arrested for a crime that may not require a bail or if you can handle the bail on your own it is better to do so considering the money is refundable. Bail bonds are mostly helpful when you can not afford bail and may end up with jail time till your hearing without it.

The reasons you should consider a bail bond in such cases are as follows

  1. You and your loved ones can get out even if your crime doesn’t qualify for the OR to be released without bail
  2. You can use their help to pay for bail at lower collateral in case of emergency and may, later on, liquify your property without having to sell it in an emergency to be released.
  3. You don’t have to prove your financial assets as your own unless your offense is related to money itself. Most of the courts may require you to prove where your bail money is coming from. Hiring a bail bond can ensure the privacy of your financial matters.
  4. Hiring a bail bond agent doesn’t mean they will just lend you money to get out. They are experienced and have knowledge of the bailing process. They can handle your paperworks and make sure you are released faster. 
  5. Lastly, Bail Bonds take responsibility for you. They put their money on the line and this means they will ensure that you go through the whole process properly for them to get their money back. They may put down certain conditions and requirements for it and can even hire a bounty hunter to ensure you don’t escape. This is also a risky investment on their end.

For more information on Bail Bond loans you can contact Bail Bonds today for affordable bail bond options. 


Going to jail can be a seriously stressful situation and you may not even know how long your stay can turn out to be, especially if you’re not bailed out early. The time for your trial can be as long as a month or more between the time of your arrest and the set date. Therefore getting out even temporarily should be your priority. For this purpose, people turn to bail bonds for an early release. You probably have to agree to all of their terms that ensure their company that they will get what they lend you back. These are precautions on their behalf considering their money is on the line for helping you. You may at least be required to pay these small prices in order to get out of jail while you are preparing for your case or waiting for your trial.