When your bail is set, and the amount is low enough that you know you can afford to pay it yourself, it may seem obvious that you should pay immediately so you can get back to your family. Why bother going through the process of contacting a bond agent when you can just hand over a cash bail? Well, there are some pretty heavy downsides to paying your bail yourself.
Getting an Attorney
Hiring a private attorney is expensive. They often have an hourly fee within the hundreds of dollars, meaning asking one to help with your trial will cost you thousands. That’s why many people choose to use their right to a public defender. Public defenders are free and can be exactly what your budget needs.
However, if you pay your bail rather than work with a bond agency, then you are demonstrating to the courts that you have access to sufficient funds to afford a private attorney. The amount you paid for your bail could completely clean your bank account out, but in the court’s eyes you have enough money to not need a public defender. Thus, they may not grant you one.
Hiring a bond agency, on the other hand, will show the courts that you do not have the money currently available to pay your bail, let alone hire an attorney. This may allow you access to a public defender.
Bail and Your Bank Account
This may seem a bit obvious, but not paying a cash bail means that you will have more immediate money in your bank account. When you pay bail, it is to get home to your family, your job, and your home. No one wants to sit in jail when they haven’t even been convicted of anything yet. But getting home to your family by draining your bank account can leave you in a dire situation.
Most people get paid on a two week or even monthly basis. So even if you still have a job after your arrest, it is unlikely that you will be receiving a paycheck immediately after getting out of jail. This can leave you with no funds, and if you are a parent or have a dependent family member, that can mean you will be unable to pay for your needs. Hiring a bond agent will keep you from draining your savings while still getting home to take care of your family.
You May Never Get That Money Back
When the proceedings to your trial begin, you will be required by the court to show up on time, dress formally, and be at the exact right location. That can be easier said than done, however. The California court system is constantly changing locations and departments of trials and proceedings. You may receive last minute or even late notifications of these changes, which can put you at risk of your bail becoming forfeit when you fail to show up to your proceeding.
A bail bond agent, however, has a vested interest in making sure that you go to all appointments. They will work with you to keep you notified and on task. In addition, at Balboa Bail Bonds, our agents work hard to have good relationships with the local courts in their area and may be able to negotiate on your behalf and keep your bond from becoming forfeit if you miss an appointment.
If you or a loved one need a bond in order to get back home where you belong, contact Balboa Bail Bonds at (619) 760-2222. We offer flexible payment plans and an incredibly low 10% fee to all our clients.