The bail bondsman, also called bail agent, is in charge of the bail you have posted to get someone released from jail. Once you sign over the bond contract, your communications aren’t over. The bonding company and agent is going to keep up with you to make sure the person released isn’t a flight risk and be sure they get their payment. Here are the reasons why you need to check in with the bail bondsman.
What is a Bail Bond?
A bail bond is a contract that is between someone attempting to release someone out of jail, and a bonding agent. The agent will pay the bail at the local jail for your friend or loved one, while you pay them a fee of 10% of the bail amount. So if bail is set at $5,000, you must pay them a fee of $500 for their services. When you go into a bail bond, you become the co-signer of the bond, also known as a surety bond. You become responsible for the individual being released, making it your obligation to be sure they don’t run and make all future court appearances.
Why is the Bail Bondsman Important?
The bail bondsman is the person that is fronting the bail money when you can’t afford to do so. By paying them a fee, you are promising to be sure this person goes back to court when requested to do so. Since, by paying the bail to the court, they are promising the person will appear in court when asked, you also need to abide by this. When you bail someone out of jail using a bail bondsman, they will most likely request to see the person being released. They will want to take their vitals, ask where they spend their time, where they work, what kind of car they drive, and look at any physical characteristics that distinguish them from others. If they do disappear and don’t arrive in court, the bonding company has bounty hunters that will look for them and bring them into the jail, since that causes them to get an arrest warrant.
Checking in With the Bondsman
It is important that you, as the co-signer, check in regularly with the bonding agent, as well as the person released from jail. The bondsman needs these check-ins to be sure you are still around and have not tried to disappear. They want to continue being aware of your release and court dates or appearances for your trial. It is important to always be respectful to the bonding company, as they are under no obligation to bond you. They did it as a courtesy and can cancel the bond at any time. If they do cancel it, the person released must go back into jail unless you can pay the full bail amount.
Checking in with your bondsman is a courtesy to keep them informed of what you are doing and where you are located. Keep up with them and arrive in court, and you’re giving yourself the best chance possible.