When a friend or family member calls you in the middle of the night and asks for your help getting out of jail, what they are really asking you to do is to co-sign their bail bond. If you agree to help them, your obligation goes beyond giving some money to a bondsman. You are making a commitment that can have serious consequences to you if things go wrong.
Before you visit a bail bond agency to co-sign a bond for a friend, you should know three very important things:
1. Co-signing a bail bond means that you are responsible if the person who has been arrested misses court dates or decides to leave town. This can mean that you will be responsible for paying the full bail amount if your friend or family member decides to flee from justice. While you won’t have to worry if a person is late for one appearance or reschedules a court date, you can be on the hook for a lot of money if the person fails to appear multiple times.
2. You are agreeing to the terms and conditions set in the bail agreement along with any contract that you sign with your bail bond agency. If you have questions about Burbank bail bonds ahead of time, it’s important that you ask them right away before you put your pen to paper.
3. When you reach an agreement with a bail bondsman, you are agreeing to pay the full amount for their services. This might not mean that you are paying the full amount of the bail upfront — in many cases, you will pay a fraction of the amount with a promise to pay in full if the defendant skips town. Even if your friend or family member tells you they will be financially responsible for any costs you incur, you’ll be the one legally responsible by becoming a co-signer.