When someone is arrested, the immediate concern for family and friends is often securing their release. This is where the services of a bail bondsman may come into play. However, there are a lot of misconceptions about what a bail bondsman does and doesn’t do. Today, Ajua Bail Bonds would like to break down the role of a bail bondsman and dispel myths and provide clarity on their role.
What Does a Bail Bondsman Do?
• Secures Release from Jail: The primary role of a bail bondsman is to help secure the release of an arrested individual by providing a bail bond to the court. Once bail has been paid, the court allows the individual to remain free until the trial or the next hearing.
• Assesses Risk: Before agreeing to post bail for someone, a bail bondsman will first evaluate the risk associated with the defendant. This involves looking into the defendant’s criminal record, financial stability, ties to the community, and more.
• Sets Terms & Conditions: If a bondsman agrees to post bail, they will set terms and conditions that the defendant must follow. These conditions might include travel restrictions or mandatory check ins with the bondsman.
• Collects a Fee: For their services, bail bondsmen charge a premium, usually a percentage of the total bail amount most often around 10% to 15%. This fee is non-refundable.
• Ensures Court Appearances: Once a defendant is released on a bail bond, it is the bondsman’s responsibility to ensure that the arrested individual appears at all court dates. If the defendant fails to appear, the bondsman stands to lose the full bail amount unless they can locate and return the defendant to court.
• Retains Bounty Hunters: If a defendant skips bail, some bail bondsmen will employ bounty hunters to track down and apprehend the individual, ensuring they are returned to court.
What a Bail Bondsman Does Not Do
• Offer Legal Advice: Bail bondsmen are not lawyers and are not qualified to provide legal advice or representation. If legal advice is needed, one should contact an attorney.
• Negotiate Bail Amounts: While a bondsman can help you understand the bail process, they can’t negotiate with the court to reduce the set bail amount.
• Guarantee Outcomes: A bondsman can secure a defendant’s release from jail, but they cannot guarantee any specific legal outcomes like a case dismissal or a not guilty verdict.
• Return Premiums: Once the fee or premium is paid to the bail bondsman, it is non-refundable, even if the charges against the defendant are dropped or they are found not guilty.
• Hold Prejudices: A professional bail bondsman conducts their business without letting personal biases affect their decisions. Their role is not to judge the guilt or innocence of a person but to facilitate their constitutional right to be considered innocent until proven guilty.
Bail Bond Services in Clovis, Reedley, Sanger, Selma, Atwater, Los Banos, Merced, Visalia, Porterville, Tulare, Hanford, Corcoran, Lemoore & Greater Fresno, CA
The role of a bail bondsman is important in the judicial system, ensuring that individuals have the opportunity to secure their release while awaiting trial. Understanding what they can and cannot do helps defendants and their families understand the bail process with realistic expectations and a clear path forward. If ever in need, it’s essential to choose a reputable bail bondsman who can guide you through this often daunting process. For quality bail bond services, contact Ajua Bail Bonds today.