Bail Bond Scams? Don’t Fall For Them

Being granted the option to post bail in North Carolina after being arrested for a crime is a great opportunity for a defendant. Once temporarily out of jail, they can talk freely with their lawyer and work on their defense. Not everyone can afford to post bail, though. Some either choose to stay in jail while awaiting trial or they end up requiring the services of a bail bondsman in Concord.

During these situations, friends or family members of the accused may feel vulnerable. Unfortunately, people with bad intentions can exploit this vulnerability and pose as a fake bail bondsman and subject the defendant to a bail bond scam or bail fraud.

To avoid being a victim of a bail bond scam, keep in mind the following things:

1. Avoid anyone who’s offering a discount

Bail bonds are more affordable than posting bail yourself. Instead of paying the full price, you’ll only pay about 15 percent of the actual bail amount. The bail agent will post the bail in full, but will get their money back if you show up to all your court dates.

Even though bail bonds are already a less expensive option, someone posing as a bail bondsman might still offer you a discount. Beware of these people. Cheap bail bonds may sound like a good idea, but you also might be setting yourself up for a scam where the person offering the discount may not be a bail bond agent at all.

2. Only deal with licensed bail agents

Not just anyone can be a bail agent. A bail bond agent needs to be licensed in order to operate in North Carolina and other states that allow bail bonds. The bail agent must carry their license with them all the time. So, one sure-fire way to know that you’re not getting scammed is by dealing with a licensed NC bail bondsman. Always ask to see a bail agent’s license. If they refuse or get defensive, steer clear of them.

3. You’ll fill out paperwork

As with any legal transaction, the services of a bail bondsman require you to fill out paperwork. A real and trustworthy bail agent will sit the consignee down to fill out paperwork, ask for I.D., employment verification, and other information such as the collateral.

If there’s no paperwork whatsoever, be cautious.

4. Run an online background check

Almost everyone has some kind of an online presence today, even businesses. Just as you might check restaurant reviews before deciding where to eat, some background research on the bail agent or the bail bond company that you’re dealing with. What their previous clients say about them can be of huge help in making sure you’re dealing with someone trustworthy.

Speaking of trust, Amistad Bail Bonds is the leading provider of bail bonds in the Triangle Area of North Carolina. Since 2009, we have been helping families release their loved ones from jail.

5. Be wary of fraudulent tactics

Scams are everywhere and people who are in panic or desperate need are easy targets for fraudsters. The most effective way to avoid falling prey to bail bond scams is to know what to look out for.

Fraudulent individuals resort to all kinds of scams, but here are some of the most common tactics:

Cold Calls

If someone calls you and says your husband got arrested, it’s easy to be consumed by panic and do as the caller tells you. If at any point in the conversation, the caller tells you they’re a bail bondsman and they can help you get your loved one out of jail, don’t engage. Hang up and call your husband. If he doesn’t respond, call relatives or friends he’s likely to be with. Failing this, call local lock-ups to see if he’s in any of them.

Legitimate bail bond agents never make cold calls. They only call family members on behalf of the arrested party. On the other hand, fraudsters make cold calls in an attempt to get money from panicked loved ones.

Solicitations

Bail bond agents don’t prowl the halls of jails, looking for family members in despair. Remember that you should be the one to get in touch with a bail bond agent, not the other way around. If someone claims to be a bail bond agent but solicits clients at jails and then acts urgent in a way that raises red flags, listen to your guts. If it feels false, it most likely is.

Phone Payments

It’s impossible to sign a contract over the phone. Why, then, should you give someone who claims to be a bondsman money over the phone?

Bail bond agencies are located close to local lockups, and for good reason: they usually ask clients to visit their office to talk about the details.

Threatening and Abusive Behaviors

This may seem like something straight out of an action film, but some bail bond agencies resort to drastic measures to extort money. An article published by the New York Times narrates how a bail bond agency abducted their client and demanded payment from the person’s loved ones, so they ended up paying more than what they originally owed.

If a bail bond agency exhibits threatening or abusive behaviors, assert your rights. If your bondsman tries to detain you, for example, you have the right to look for a warrant of arrest. This is true even if you may have missed payments on the bond. Remember that you have signed a contract and in the event one of the parties fails to comply, you can take the legal route.

Avoid Bail Bond Scams: Work with a Reputable Agency

When you’re in the middle of a crisis, it’s hard to think straight, making you more vulnerable to scams. When a loved one is in jail and someone reaches out to you with an offer that seems too good to be true, wait a little bit more. Make sure everything is legitimate and work only with a reputable bail bond company.

For fast, professional, and trusted bail bond service, Amistad Bail bonds is available to you at any time of day. Contact us at 919-790-6887 for more information.

How The Bail Bond Process Works

The bail bond process may seem intimidating, but here we have designed a step by step guide for you to better understand what we do in Raleigh and surrounding areas. The bail bond process can be quite simple when you have Amistad Bail Bonds on your side. We work with you and your family members to make sure the debt is paid, and that it is paid quickly. We know this is a stressful time for anyone involved, so we want to make the bail bond process as simple as possible. Learn more here, and always call us if you ever need help with a bail bond in Raleigh!

Infographic on how the process of bail bonds work at Amistad Bail Bonds, in Raleigh.

Why You Should Show Up For Court

When a person gets arrested, there are many situations in which they must post bail in order to be released. This bail is basically an assurance that the person will show up as scheduled to their future court hearing. When the person shows up to all his appearances and completes his case entirely, the bail money will be given back. If they don’t show up for court, they will not receive the money and a warrant for their arrest is issued. And that is where a whole new world of trouble opens up.

Don’t Skip

There are a few reasons why a person would skip court; the main reason being fear of a conviction and jail time. Those who face a DWI conviction might be afraid of losing their license, while other people might skip because they left town hoping that the law will forget about them. Still others might have simple, legitimate excuses for missing court such as illness or not having a way to get there. No matter what the reason, missing your appointed hearing is never a good idea and it can lead to a lot of worse problems such as:

A warrant for your arrest will be issued. Going forward, even if you get pulled over for a traffic infraction, you will be taken immediately to jail.
Your judge can remove possibility of future release until your trial is over.
You can face an additional charge of contempt of court, which includes fines and possible jail time.
It looks bad to the judge, who has a fair amount of discretion over your case. Lack of remorse can get you a harsher punishment in some courts.
The best thing that you can do for yourself and for your family, is to show up as scheduled to your future hearings until the issue is resolved. If you have a legitimate reason for missing your hearing, contact the court as soon as possible to make other arrangements.

Posting Bail

If you have trouble coming up with your bail in the first place, a bail bondsman in Graham NC can help. At Amistad Bail Bonds, we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to get you out of jail and back to where you should be. You simply pay a small percentage of your set bail up front and we pay the entire amount of bail to the court. At that point, we’ll be sure that you keep your scheduled court appearance so that you stay out of trouble and avoid future repercussions.

Remember, it might not always be easy to do the right thing, but the right things is always the best thing to do.

Truths About Bail Bonding

When someone you love gets arrested, the only thing on your mind is how to get them out of jail before lights out. When you hear the word bail, you’ll do anything you can to get your loved one back home no matter the cost.

If the cost is more than you can afford, you’ll want to call a bail bondsman in Charlotte NC for help. You might have heard of a bail bondsman in passing and there are things you may or may not know about using one. The ultimate job of a bail bondman is to help get your loved one out of jail. Below, some common misunderstandings about bail bonds are cleared up for your appreciation.

Cash Only.

Many people think that coming up with a boatload of cash is the only way to get you or your loved one released from jail. The truth is, though a bondsman will accept cash as payment, they often accept all major credit cards, bank debt cards, and some will even accept collateral.

Negotiation Power.

Many are under the assumption that a Charlotte bail bondsman can negotiate with the courts for a lower bail to get a person out of jail. Unfortunately, this is not the case. When the court determines the amount of bail set, a bondman does not have the ability to change that amount. The only person who can make that change is a judge.

Heading To The Jail.

You might believe that you will have to go to the jail where your loved one is being held in order to get the released. This is not so. Bail bond agents can help you no matter where you are throughout Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. One phone call is all we need to get the process rolling.

No More Charges.

Once you pay your fees to the bail bondsman, there will not be any more fees required by you. Unless the defendant does not show up for court. In that case, the court will keep the entire fee and the bondsman will need to collect it from the co-signer.

Shady Deal.

You might be wary of hiring a bail bondsman, believing that they are not reputable and will only take advantage of the situation. This is a myth. Bail bond agents must go through training, certifications, licensing, and meet strict employment criteria to even become an agent. Bondsmen work hard for the good of people who need help.

If you are looking for a reputable and knowledgeable bail bondsman in Charlotte,  Amistad Bail Bonds is the number to call.  Amistad is reliable and trustworthy. Call today and your loved one will be back where they belong in no time.

An Array Of Services

When you or someone you love gets arrested, the judge will set a determined amount of money that must be paid in order for release from jail. As you might already know, this is called bail. Some people can come up with the amount that is set for bail, while others must find ways to raise the funds. This is where a bail bondsman can help.

Need Bail?

A bail bond service, such as Amistad Bail Bonds, can help you post bail when you don’t have enough money up front. By paying us a percentage of the bail amount, we’ll arrange for the release of you or your loved one. After release, we’ll help to make sure that all court appearances are met and kept until the case is closed.

We offer finance plans, various payment options, and co-signing approval. Amistad also offers immigration bail bonds to those who affected by that type of situation.

Need A New Job?

If you are interested in becoming a bail bond agent in the state of North Carolina, we can help you understand the minimum requirements needed to get started. You’ll also receive help with the state licensing exams by talking the pre-certification classes offered through Amistad. North Carolina state law requires that new bail bond agents work under the supervision of an agent who has been licensed for at least 2 years, so why not let Amistad supervise you?

Need Your Own Business?

If you are interested in starting your own business, Amistad can help. Having your own bail bonds business is a great way to be your own boss, set your own hours, and do something that makes a difference in the world. You’ll get on the fast track to learning about bail bonding so you can get your license and start your business sooner rather than later. And you’ll continue to get support even after you pass your final exam! We offer assistance in website building, free documents and forms, live support 24/7, and access to a wealth of experience and knowledge.

The folks at Amistad are here for you whether you need to post bail, or want to learn how to help someone post bail. Whatever your needs are, call today.

Know Your Situation – Premium Retention in the Event of Surrender

When a client hires us, we here at Amistad Bail Bonds want and expect the experience to go smoothly. There are times, however, when the circumstances do not end ideally. In an effort to keep our clients educated and aware of their rights, we want to outline the situations where Amistad Bail Bonds will keep the premium paid though the defendant is returned to the authorities.

We often get inquires about these types of situations. If we feel the defendant is at risk for fleeing the bond but has not yet missed a court date, we may surrender the individual back to the authorities. Under such a circumstance, we are obligated by law to return the premium paid to us. There are many other bondsmen who will retain the premium because their clients are not aware of the statutes. We know the fine print can be too much to take in. You can trust us to follow the guidelines lawfully.

For your and our protection, we are listing below the 7 reasons why we would return a defendant to the authorities AND retain the premium.

At any time before there has been a breach of the undertaking in any type of bail or fine and cash bond, we may surrender the defendant to the sheriff of the county in which the defendant is bonded to appear or to the sheriff where the defendant was bonded. In such a case, the full premium shall be returned within 72 hours after the surrender. The defendant may be surrendered without the return of premium for the bond if the defendant does any of the following:

  1. Willfully fails to pay the premium to us or willfully fails to make a premium payment under the agreement specified in G.S. 58-71-167.
  2. Changes his or her address without notifying us before the address change.
  3. Physically hides from us.
  4. Leaves the State without our permission.
  5. Violates any order of the court.
  6. Fails to disclose information or provides false information regarding any failure to appear in court, any previous felony convictions within the past 10 years, or any charges pending in any State or federal court.
  7. Knowingly provides us with incorrect personal identification, or uses a false name or alias.

Please give us a call to discuss your options. We’re here to answer your questions and offer guidance. For a free consultation, reach out to us at (919) 790-6887.