Understanding Bail And Collateral

8 September 2017
 Categories: Law, Blog


When someone you love has been arrested, there will be an arraignment hearing within a day or two of the arrest. At this hearing, your loved one (the defendant) will plead either guilty or innocent. If pleading innocent and the District Attorney has reasonable proof that he or she is guilty, the judge will decide whether to allow him or her to go free until there is a trial. If the defendant is allowed to go free, a bail may be required. This is an amount of money held by the court to ensure the person will return for the trial instead of leaving the area or hiding to avoid conviction. If a bail is required, there are a few things you need to know before giving the court the money.


Depending on the severity of the crime, the judge will determine the amount of bail. Sometimes it will only be $100 or that range and other times it can be in the tens of thousands of dollars or even in the hundred thousands range. When the amount of bail is too much for you to pay, you have the option of using a bail bond company. Usually there are bail bond companies close to the jail or courthouse.

Bail Bond Company

A bail bond company will give you the ability to pay a portion of the bail to them and they will guarantee the court the total amount of the bail. The portion required is generally 10 percent of the total bail. This money is the fee for the service and is nonrefundable. This is why it is better to pay the total bail yourself, if possible. When you pay the whole thing only a small fee is taken by the court and the rest returned to you when your loved one shows up for the court date.


When the amount of bail is excessive or if the defendant has a history of not showing up in court, the bail bond company may require some type of collateral for the bond. This is often the title to a car or deed to a piece of real estate. You can negotiate other forms of collateral with the bondsman if you do not have these items. Once the person shows up in court, for the duration of the trial, your collateral will be returned to you. Of course, you will still have to pay any service fees.

Bailing someone out of jail is not something you should do lightly if the amount of money is large or collateral is required. Be sure the person will show up for all court dates so you do not lose your money. You should also be sure he or she will reimburse you for the service fees you pay. For more information, contact a business such as Rader Bonding Co.