How Bail Bonds Work

how bail bonds work in americaAnyone charged with a crime gets the opportunity to be out of jail and be free until he or she faces trial due to bail bonds. Different states in the U.S. have their own bail bond systems. They offer different types of bail bonds but the principle behind the system is the same. If either you have been charged with a crime or you plan to post bail for someone else, you should apply for a bail bond. This article provides information on how bail bonds work.

A bond is a monetary promise made by the defendant or someone appearing on behalf of the defendant such as a surety to a court assuring that the defendant will return to court for trial. The court has the authority to forfeit the money if the defendant doesn’t return to court as promised. A friend, family member or a professional bail bond agent can act as a surety. The purpose of the bail bond is to make sure that the defendant appears for the trial¬†on the required dates without having to keep him or her in custody until such a date. In fact, the bond should be significantly high so that the defendant won’t forfeit the bail money and simply disappear. Every state has its own bail bond system where the judge would decide on the appropriate amount of bond depending on the crime committed by the defendant.

The judge can refuse to give bail to a certain defendant if the judge thinks that the defendant is a flight risk – which means the defendant is not likely to return to court for the trial. On the other hand, a defendant is not likely to be considered a flight risk when he or she has family ties to the area such as family living in the area, minimal criminal history, and employment in the area, etc.

Once the judge has set a bail amount, the defendant or his/her agent can post bail with the relevant court clerk during regular court hours. In fact, the court will issue a receipt acknowledging the bail amount posted. If the defendant misses his/her trial dates, the judge will schedule a forfeiture hearing and issue an arrest warrant to arrest the defendant. If the defendant won’t arrive for the forfeiture hearing or doesn’t have a valid excuse, the court will retain the bond amount.

The aforementioned read offers information on how bail bonds work and I hope it helps you understand the process. Read more on our main page.