When you need to pay bail, a bail bond company can help you out. But there’s one big question you might be asking when you’re looking at possible ways of paying bail. Where exactly does the bail bond money go? What’s the process, what does the money pay for, and do you get any money back? It might seem like one big mystery, but it’s not as complicated as you might think.
So what does happen to bail bond money after you post bail?
Where Does Bail Bond Money Go?
Posting bail is the first step if you want to get yourself or a loved one released from jail. There are a few ways to post bail, including paying cash or using a bail bond. When you choose to take out a bail bond, you will be asked to pay a percentage of the total bail amount to the bail bond company you select. This is usually 10% of the bail but it could be less, depending on the agency you use and whether any discounts or offers might be available.
Once you have paid your portion of the bail amount, the bail bond company will cover the rest, on the condition that you will appear in court when required to. This money will be held by the courts as a guarantee that the defendant will attend their court dates.
After all court dates have taken place, and the defendant has made their required appearances, the court will then return the money back to the party that posted it. In the case of a bail bond, that means it goes back to the bail bond agency. If you paid cash bail instead, you will get your money back.
But what happens if the defendant fails to appear in court? In this situation, the courts keep the money. It is distributed among the state, cities and counties using a formula that is given in the California Penal Code.
Where Is the Bail Money Held?
While a case is ongoing, the bail money is typically held in a special account, which is normally run by the court or a government agency. This ensures the money is kept secure and organized so that it can be returned to the right person or entity when it’s time for it to be repaid.
Is the Full Amount Repaid Once the Case Is Closed?
Some fees or fines could possibly be deducted by the court before the money held is paid back to the person or entity that posted it. The bail money could also be forfeited to the court if the defendant is found guilty. In some cases, it’s possible for the money to be used to pay restitution to the victim of the crime.
Is the Money Returned Right Away?
If the charges are dropped or the case is resolved, bail money might not be returned immediately. In fact, it can take a number of weeks or months for everything to be processed properly. Of course, if you use a bail bond, this isn’t something that you need to be concerned about. However, if you pay with cash, you should keep this in mind.
Can a Bail Bondsman Pull Your Bond?
A bail bondsman is essentially saying they will be responsible for you appearing in court when they pay your bail. So you might wonder if there are some circumstances when the bail bond agency decides it doesn’t want to do this anymore. A bail bond can be revoked in certain conditions, but it’s usually by the person who took out the bond or by a judge. One reason a bail bond might be revoked is if the defendant or their co-signer requests it. Other reasons a bond could be revoked by the courts include if the defendant is hard to track, if they break their bond agreement or if they show signs that they are a high flight risk.
If you don’t make your bail bond payments on time, your bond could be revoked if your case is still open.
How Do Bail Bondsmen Get Paid?
Bail bond companies will agree to cover the majority of your bail on the understanding that they will get that money back after your trial is over. So how do bail bondsmen make money? When you take out a bail bond, you agree to pay a premium of a certain percentage of the total bail amount. This is usually 10% but can be less in some circumstances.
It’s this premium that bail bond agencies use to make money. This is a non-refundable payment, so the company keeps it as payment for taking on the responsibility of posting bail and ensuring the defendant turns up to court. Since bail bondsmen work with multiple clients at a time, they can ensure they have enough money to pay their staff and keep their lights on at the office.
To What Extent to Bail Bondsmen Go to Secure Their Bond?
Bail bondsmen clearly have a strong interest in protecting their investment. They want to get back the money they’ve put forward, so they’re keen to ensure their client appears in court when they’re required to. But what do they do, and what are they allowed to do, to secure their bond?
One thing to note is that bail bond agents themselves can’t arrest anyone. However, they can use bail bond enforcement agents (or bounty hunters) to track down and bring in someone who has failed to appear in court. In addition to this, a bail bondsman might ask for collateral to secure a bail bond, which could include property or something else of value.
If someone fails to make bail bond payments, bail bond agencies can also sue the person in civil court to ensure they are paid what they are owed.
Contact Balboa Bail Bonds
When you need help with bail bonds, get in touch with Balboa Bail Bonds. We’re available at any time to provide advice and help you post bail.