Being arrested on drug charges is no joke. Lawmakers take those charges very seriously.
Serious enough where it’s likely that when you appear in court, the judge will order a bail amount to be paid. If you can’t pay that amount, you’ll stay in jail.
But most of us don’t have thousands of dollars lying around, which means a bail bond is required.
Keep reading as we answer the question “how do bail bonds work.”
How Do Bail Bonds Work? A Little History Lesson
Our current bail bond system has evolved from a system developed around 1677 in England. The laws went virtually unchanged until 1966.
It was then that the Bail Reform Act came into play to lower the amounts of bail so that it was affordable to all people. Until then, the laws often discriminated against the poor.
The Bail Bonds Process
Usually around 48 hours after you’ve been arrested, you’ll appear before the courts.
If your crime doesn’t involve murder or domestic abuse, the magistrate will announce any conditions of your release and the amount of bail you’ll need to pay in order to be freed from jail until your trial begins.
While it is possible to ask the judge to lower the amount, that can also backfire on you. A prosecutor can then ask the judge to set bail at a higher amount.
Hire a good criminal defense attorney to advise you as soon as possible.
Types Of Bail
How bail bonds work differs depending on the type of bail the judge orders you to pay.
You could receive a written promise to appear. This means the accused promises to attend all their court hearings. No money is required.
A judge might require an unsecured bond. In this case, the judge sets the amount of the bond but you don’t have to pay it in order to be released from jail.
However, if you fail to appear in court, a money judgment would then be entered against you. If you are arrested, you’d need to pay the money judgment along with a higher bond in order to be released from jail.
A secured bond is the most common type of bond. That’s when you pay the amount of bail in cash, usually through a bonding company or using collateral such as real estate.
Lastly, there are cash bonds. Cash bonds require the defendant to pay the amount of the bond in cash.
How A Bail Bondsman Works
How does a bail bondsman work? If the magistrate has ordered you to pay bail in order to be released from prison, your family may have to visit a bail bonds company.
If your bail is set at $30,000, the bail bonds company would guarantee the courts the full bail using a surety bond to set you free. Once you appear to all your court appearances and complete your case, the full bail liability is terminated.
A bail bonds company typically takes 15% of the full amount of the bail as payment. Meaning they would receive $4,500 in return of securing the full bail amount on your behalf.
What Happens When You Violate The Terms
It’s never a wise thing to violate the terms of your bail. Failing to appear in court or violating your conditions in any way can lead to your bail being forfeited.
You could also be issued a warrant for your arrest. Once in custody, you’d remain in jail either until your trial date or you pay an even higher bond and fulfill harsher requirements.
If you want to learn the answer to “how do bail bonds work,” look no further.
Contact us today for a free consultation.