If you or a loved one is arrested, but can't afford to pay full cash bail, then a bail bonds agent is immensely helpful. There are many benefits to using a bonds agent rather than sitting it out in jail or paying the court directly. Here are some benefits of using a bail bonds agent and what bail bonds entail.
You Only Pay a Percentage
If you pay cash bail to the courts, then you must pay the entire bail amount upfront. The amount you pay depends on your charges and the bail amount set by the court. Bail amounts can be high even with less serious crimes. With a bail bonds agent, you get what is called a "surety bond." You only pay a percentage, or premium, for the bonds agent's services. The state limits the premium amount, but bonds tend to be around 10% of the full bail.
You Can Make Payments
When you take out a bail bond, you can work out a payment plan or other payment type. The bail bonds agent will pay the entire bail to the court upfront. If you pay full bail with the courts, you don't get much leeway in how or when you can pay your bail. The court will not release you until the entire bail is paid.
You Get Out Faster
Because the bonds agent knows the system and pays the bail upfront, you will likely spend less time in jail. The bail bond agency knows the system, so you aren't muddling through the process. Many people get out of jail within hours, provided they call the bonds agent as soon as possible.
You Have More Confidentiality
When you pay full cash bail, the judge may question where your bail money is coming from. Borrowing from another person may also raise a few eyebrows. Your friends and family may have questions about your arrest or charges. With a bonds agent, your financial and legal information is kept private between you and the agency.
You Are Working With Experts
The bond agency works with you to help you pay your bond and ensure you show up for court. They will help you through the entire bond and bail process. They take on most of the risk because they pay the court the entire bail on your behalf.
As long as you follow your bail bonds contract and show up for your court duties, you will not be responsible for the entire bail. If you have questions about bail bonds, how they work and whether you need them, contact a bail bonds agent for more information.