How Bail Works And Other Frequently Asked Questions
Although bail bonds are a term that has cemented itself in the American lexicon, many people don’t understand what a bail bond is or how bail works, what the cost of a bail bond will be, or how posting bail works. We’re here to answer all of these questions (and many others) to help make the bail bonds process as simple as possible.
So, What is a Bail Bond?
When a person is arrested, they are booked into the county jail. That process takes several hours; however, and can vary from jail to jail. Bail is then set based on the charges that they were arrested for.
The bail bond is an “insurance policy” that serves the sole purpose of making sure that the defendant appears in court. As bail bondsmen, we underwrite the bail bond securing a co-signer (or co-signers) that will guarantee these appearances in court. Collateral such as your car or property is not required with a qualified co-signor.
The cost of a bail bond is 10% of the bail amount and is regulated by the California Department of Insurance and cannot legally be discounted.
Below you will find a video which explains the answers to some of the most common questions asked by bail bonds customers in the Sacramento area. If you have any further questions, please feel free to call us at (916) 446-2663 or toll free (888) 449-2663, 24 hours a day.
How does a Bail Bond Work?
Bail bonds work as an “insurance policy” that guarantees a person’s appearance in court. This “insurance policy” has nothing to do with the merits or facts of the case. The bail agency posts this bond with the court and guarantees the appearance of the defendant in court. If the defendant appears in court as ordered, then the bail bond is never in jeopardy. However, if the defendant fails to appear, the bail agency has 180 days to return the defendant to court. If the bail agency fails to do so, then the bond is forfeited and the full amount of the bond must be paid to the court ultimately by the co-signers of the bail bond. The cost of a bail bond is, which is regulated by the State of California, is 10% of the bail amount. Greg Padilla Bail Bonds is your best resource in the Sacramento area if you are going through the process of posting bail.
Does the full amount of the bond have to be paid?
The only time one would have to pay the full amount of the bail bond is if the defendant “failed to appear” in court and was not returned to the court within 180 days. Although this bail bond is an insurance policy guaranteeing the appearance of the defendant in court, the insurance policy is guaranteed by the co-signers, thus they would be held fully liable for the bail amount if the defendant was not returned to the court.
Is the premium returned upon the case being dismissed or completed ?
As it is stated in the FIRST Clause in the Indemnity Agreement, the premium is the cost of the bail bond and it is fully earned upon the release of the person from jail. Once the bail bond is posted and accepted by the jail, there is no refund of the premium. And if you are on a payment plan, the payments are still due no matter the outcome of the case.
What should be done if someone misses court while out on bail?
If someone misses court for any reason, you must first realize our agency was the very company that got them released from jail. We have the ability to file a motion with the court and have the bail bond reinstated back to the original terms. Therefore, it is our objective to keep the person out of jail on bail throughout court proceedings. Call our office immediately if there has been a failure to appear and we will schedule a new court date.
How do I know when my bail bond is completed and the co-signers and the defendant are no longer liable for the bail bond?
Upon the completion of the case, the judge will “Exonerate” the bail bond in open court. At this point the bond is no longer active and the indemnitor and defendant are no longer liable for the bail bond; however, they are still liable for any outstanding premium and/or expenses incurred.
What happens if I miss a payment?
Understand that we issue our customers credit in an effort to work with the economic realities we all have. Therefore, we attempt to set up payment plans that can be afforded. These payment plans are very important to our existence; therefore, it is important that the payments are made timely.