When you or someone close to you is arrested, it is obviously a trying time. It is important to know how in simple terms, bail and bonds differ. Bail is a dollar figure amount set by a judge to allow the accused, or defendant, to be released from jail until the trial date.
A bail bond is a deposit and a promise the defendant will follow the bail conditions and appear for their court date. If the defendant breaks the bond conditions, the bondsman will pay the additional bond amount.
If bail is paid by cash bail and the defendant abides by all of the conditions set forth in the bail conditions and appears for his, or her, trial, bail will be refunded, no matter the verdict. It is important to understand that bail, in-and-of-itself, is not punishment. It is an assurance that the defendant will appear for court and abide by any conditions set forth while out on bail.
With a property bond, such as allowing a lien on a vehicle to pay for bail, if all bail conditions are met, the lien will become null and void.
Bail through Bond
When a third-party becomes involved, the fee for posting bail is generally the amount a bondsman has to pay the court for release of the defendant, usually 10%. That is the amount you will need to pay the bondsman, upfront.
For example, if bail is set at $1,000 and you need a bond, you will need to pay the bondsman $100, which he will in turn pay to the court. If the defendant appears for trial and meets the conditions of bail, the bondsman will get the $100 deposit back and that pays him for his service. There is no refund of that deposit to the defendant. The bondsman is taking a risk. If the defendant does not comply with the conditions or misses the trial date, the bondsman will need to pay the court the additional $900.
What if the Defendant is Found Guilty?
As long as the defendant complies with bail conditions and appears in court on the date of his, or her, trial, bail will be refunded. Again, bail is set for the release of the defendant before trial. It has nothing to do with the verdict, although those previously convicted of a crime will often receive a higher bail amount than those arrested for the first time.
You can find the right bail bondsman for you by looking through those fully cited bondsmen on the Bail Agent Network. Most are available day or night, 24/7.