When you or a loved one is arrested for an alleged crime, after the booking process is complete, there is typically a bail amount decided upon by the relevant authorities. Bail is an amount of money given to the court that allows the arrestee to be released from jail. The money is held by the court until all legal proceedings surrounding the accused person are satisfied. The court expects the defendant to show up for his or her court dates in order to recover the bail money that the court holds as collateral.
Here at Balboa Bail Bonds, we know how stressful the prospect of paying money to get someone out of jail can be. The ins and out of the criminal justice system can be daunting, but don’t worry. When a bail amount is decided on, there are various way in which the bail can be satisfied.
Your Options When Paying Bail
When it comes to posting bail in order to get yourself or a loved one out of holding, there are three ways of approaching the situation. You can:
- Pay the entire lump sum of bail to the legal entity that is holding the individual.
- Hire a bail bonds agent and pay a percentage, called a premium, of the requested bail to the agent.
- Let the individual in holding stay in jail until he or she can see a judge.
Each of these options has its own pros and cons, and what works for one individual in a certain situation may not work for another. It is important to weigh out all your options and make an educated decision. You may want to take the first option that comes along, but making a well-thought-out choice on how to proceed is the best way to ensure you can focus on fighting the charges.
Paying the Whole Bail Amount Out of Pocket
If your family has a disposable income or substantial savings, covering the full bail amount with the cash you have available to you is possible. The “cash bond” that you pay will be returned to you upon completion of the legal case against you or your loved one. Unfortunately, for the majority of arrestees, the asking price of bail is too steep to pay on their own, and asking family members and friends for bail money can add complications to an already-stressful situation. For this reason, the majority of bail bonds are not paid for in this manner.
Hiring a Bail Bonds Agent
Acquiring the services of a bail bonds agent is the commonest and easiest way to cover bail for yourself or a loved one. With a bail bond agent, you only have to pay a percentage of the bail up front to the agent, and the remainder of the bail will be covered by the agent or agency.
Hiring a bail bondsman is convenient because the upfront price that must be paid to post bail is greatly reduced for the arrestee. Typically, you will be asked to pay 10% of the requested bail, known as the premium, in order to get the remaining bail amount covered. The bail bond agent will also help you and your loved ones navigate the pitfalls of the bail process and ensure that the individual is released from jail as soon as possible. If the defendant don’t show up for the agreed-upon court date, however, the co-signer of the bond becomes financially liable for the entire amount of the bail, payable to the bail bonds agency.
When you work with a bail bond agent, you will not receive the premium back when the case is over. As a fee for their services, bail bonds agents keep the premium to cover costs associated with processing your bail bond and assuming the risk associated with posting bail on your behalf.
So, though hiring a bail bonds agent is more convenient because it costs less initially, you end up paying out of pocket for the services that they provide. Though it might seem daunting to deal with a bail bonds agency in a time of stress, we handle bail matters on a daily basis, and are a safer bet than borrowing money from family and friends.
Waiting for a Hearing
When an arrestee is taken to jail, he or she will first be booked into the system, which can take several hours. Once processed, a standard bail amount will be set according to the county’s “bail schedule.” If no bail amount is set straight away, then a bail hearing will be set on the next business day. In this case, you’ll have to wait until the arrestee sees a judge before you can start the process of bailing him or her out.
If bail is already set, you may still want to wait until the defendant goes before the judge before posting bail. The judge may determine a bail reduction is appropriate after reviewing the case presented by the defendant’s defense attorney. If the bail amount is reduced, this may be a good time to consider bailing the defendant out. If the defendant’s bail amount is not reduced, you may bail out the defendant based on the original bail amount, or the defendant will remain in custody until their case is adjudicated.
For most people, this isn’t an option as they have jobs, a family, and other daily responsibilities that can’t be put on hold while waiting for their case to be adjudicated.
Call Balboa Bail Bonds for All of Your Bail Process Needs!
When you call Balboa Bail Bonds, you will speak with expert bail bond agents who provide you with the best customer service in the business. We know how hard these situations can be, so we take the time to explain every step of the bail process as it relates to your specific situation. We are dedicated to providing you with the guidance and assistance you need, beginning with your initial call and extending through the entirety of your case.
Call us today at (619) 760-2222 to see how we can assist you and your loved ones. We offer fast, flexible, and affordable rates and financing.