The purpose of a bail bonds company is to provide clients with a safe and efficient release from jail until their scheduled court date. If you or someone you know is arrested, the last thing you want is to stop life and sit in jail. However, when someone is arrested, you may feel like you can’t afford the bail; this is where a bail bondsman comes to the rescue.
When someone is arrested, a bail bonds company will help you get out of jail by charging a percentage of the total bail amount — in most states 10%. In deciding which bail agency is the best for you, you can compare them by license status, experience, and if they are willing to offer some type of financing. In addition to those aspects, you may consider their availability of assistance and if they offer no collateral bail bonds.
One of the important aspects of choosing the best company is whether or not they are licensed to do business in your jurisdiction. When you choose a bondsman, they must be licensed and have a good standing in the area where you need assistance. Most bail agent licensing is done through a state department of insurance. You should be able to check the license status online.
A bondsman’s experience also plays a key role in factoring the best bail agency to use. Hiring a more experienced bail bonds company may provide for a quicker release, as they’ll know more about the jail system and the paperwork involved. A bondsman with a long history is able to write larger bonds more readily and you might feel more trust based on the longevity of the business.
Financing and methods for payment may also be necessary to look at when deciding on which company to use for your bail bond needs. Looking for a bondsman that accepts cash, check, or credit cards may be your biggest concern; where as other companies may also include financing, loans and other forms of payment in order for you to be able to make bail more affordable. Don’t be fooled by low advertised bail fees; you will likely be looking at a costly finance plan and won’t be told until you sign the contract. If making payments is necessary for you, be sure to find a bail agent who doesn’t charge fees or interest.
Another consideration is collateral, which may or may not be required. It’s up to the bondsman if collateral is required for the bond. Most will require collateral equaling and sometimes exceeding the amount of the bond. One hundred-fifty percent (150%) of the bond as collateral is a traditional number in the bail industry. Collateral covers the company if the defendant fails to appear in court and needs to be found and re-arrested. Collateral is most often in the form of real estate (meaning your home). Understandably, most people don’t want to sign their house on a bail bond — not to mention that these days many people don’t have substantial equity in their homes. There are bondsmen who can provide no collateral bail bonds. If this is important, be sure to find it.
Lastly, the availability of a the company may be a concern to you. People get arrested at all hours – many of them are not standard business hours. A good bondsman should be available 24×7. Additionally, some companies offer “virtual bail,” meaning bail by email or fax. Some companies will come to you if that is important to you.
In bail, there are many options. Finding the best bail bonds company means finding the company that best suits your needs. Be sure to get all your questions answered, but don’t be afraid to get what you need when looking for a bail bond.
Tonya Page Bail Bonds is a professional bail bond company serving Southern California. Tonya Page works a