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All About Bail Bonds

Aug 17, 2007
When someone is accused of committing a criminal act, they are most commonly arrested and taken to jail. Before they can be released from jail while pending trial, someone must bail them out, or pay a bail bonds agency to step in and take over the process. The following paragraphs will answer some frequently asked questions about the process, thus helping the reader to better understand how it work.

What are Bail Bonds?

It is basically a type of bond used in order to achieve the release of someone who is incarcerated, and has been ordered to give bail in order to be released pending trial. Once it have been posted on behalf of the suspect, the accused is then released from police custody pending the final outcome of the trial. If the person does not return to court for his/her trial, the ordered amount is then forfeited, as well as any other collateral filed with the court as part of the bail bonds.

Who Issues Bail Bonds?

It is most commonly issued by licensed bail bondsmen. These agencies specialize in the field of issuing bail bonds, and seeing that their clients do show up in court when their trial begins, they must be licensed by the state.

How Much Do Bail Bonds Agencies Charge for Their Services?

The average cost of hiring them to get someone out of jail until closure of their criminal case is right around 10 percent of the actual bond cost. This does not include actual expenses agencies, which include any necessary and reasonable expense incurred with the association of the transaction. Agencies do not determine the cost of the bonds. That is up to the court to determine.

What Do Bail Bonds Agencies Do For Their Clients?

They will commonly provide their clients with:

receipts for any monies spent
copies of all signed documentation
information regarding the status of the bond, as well as status on any changes
prompt return of any and all collateral upon exoneration of the bond

If you have been arrested, or if you are ever arrested, the first thing you should do is consult an attorney before making any sort of arrangements. Although sometimes hiring an agency is your only feasible option, your attorney may be able to help you explore possible alternatives.

Bounty Hunters Locate Bail "Jumpers"

When one hires to help obtain successful release from police custody, they are essentially promising they will return to court for trial. If they do not show up for trial, their bond is forfeited, thus causing many companies to enlist the help of bounty hunters, to locate and bring the subjects back for trial, before the actual time of forfeiture. The following paragraphs will discuss the general rights of bounty hunters when their clients skip bail.

Skipping bail is a term commonly used to describe the act of accused individuals failing to make mandatory court appearances. When accused people "skip bail", the court will issue a bench warrant for their arrest, and schedule a court appearance on the matter. If the accused misses this court appearance, the amount is forfeited. This has inspired many agencies to work in conjunction with bounty hunters to locate the accused that have skipped bail, and bring them back before it have to be forfeited.

Locating and bringing jumpers back to court is often called "tracking a skip". This process of preventing bail bonds forfeiture is legal, and can often lead to bringing criminals to justice. If the accused is returned to court prior to the forfeiture date, the amount and all collateral may be returned. However, agencies will take their agreed to portion of the amount first.

Bounty hunters, also referred to as bail enforcers, are often permitted by law to locate, apprehend, and return people accused of a crime to court. In some states, the bondsman must be present for the apprehension, and sometimes they are the one required to make the arrest. In these type of arrests, there is usually no legal requirements to obtain search warrants or extradition documents. However, the bounty hunter must always be certain he has the right person. If not, both the bondsman and the bounty hunter can be held liable for false arrest charges.

State laws vary on the obligations and rights of bounty hunters in tracking a skip. Some states allow them, all means necessary in order to apprehend and arrest those who have skipped out, but other states have stricter laws. For additional information on your state laws regarding this, please contact a bail bondsman in your area.
About the Author
Copyright 2006 - Ivar Rudi, Ivar suggests you find great market for less by shopping online today. For more information and resources check out:
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