While I haven’t done a ton of criminal law in my career, I have some experience, and in that experience I’ve come to learn that knowing about bail bonds is essential. It is not something you would like to experience but it is something you must know because life is uncertain. You may be required to help a friend or a relative in need if they get arrested by the police. Law enforcement agencies arrest people on the basis of suspicion of a crime. The suspect is held by them until released on bail or until the end of their trial.
During the time the suspect is in custody, he is interrogated and made to record a statement, fingerprints, may be taken as part of the screening process and the suspect is now considered booked. It is tough to spend the time in custody until the end of the proceedings in a court of law so the law provides the defendants an option to get a bail and come to court trials without having to stay in remand.
How do they work?
When the bail is paid for the suspect, two things can happen
1. The money is held by the court until the end of the trail to make sure the suspect appears in each trial until the conclusion of the proceedings.
2. The suspect is released on bail, but it is still obligatory for him to attend the court trials.
The Bail Bondsman
Some people cannot pay the bail amount as it is pretty high. The right thing to do for the defendant or someone who acts on his behalf is to contact a bail bondsman. There are different rules for different states and localities, I personally have some experience with Cobb County bail bonds as well as counties throughout North Carolina.
Roles of the Bail Bondsman:
- The Bail bondsman takes the responsibility of the defendant until the end of the proceedings of the court. The defendant hereby pays only a small percentage of the bail money (10%) also known as premium and gets the bail.
- The Bail Bondsman is now responsible and accountable to the court for the defendant to appear in all the trails and follow the court rules and regulations.
- The Bailbondsman is backed by an insurance company who pledges to pay the full amount to court if the defendant doesn’t appear on any trial.
- They may sometimes ask for a collateral in the form of a guarantee. This can be any big asset the defendant owns.
- This professional also assists the defendant in every way because they get funded from the court after the conclusion of the proceedings. Therefore, they have their own interest in getting the defendent to court for every trial.
So, basically there are two types of bails: The Cash bail and The Bail Bondsman services.
Setting up the Bail Amount
The county bail boards at the state courts set the bail amount. You can see the bail amounts published early for public and law enforcement agencies in the newspapers and over the internet. The bail amounts are revised every year. They also greatly depend on the type and the intensity of the crime.
Bailable and Non-Bailable Offense
If the criminal offense is very grave, the bail may be denied by the court and the court may prefer to keep the suspect in jail until the end of the proceedings, considering him/her a threat to the public. One can always hire a criminal lawyer in that case; using credible sources can increase the chances of getting a bail when it seems impossible.