The terms “bail” and “bonds” are often used interchangeably by people when describing the process of getting a person who has been arrested out of jail. The truth isn’t quite that simple, as the two are terms are closely related by not identical. “Bail” is the amount of money that a court must receive in order to release a defendant from custody ahead of trial. This amount must be paid fully and in cash; if a person doesn’t have the funds to cover the full bail amount, they will need to reach out to a bondsman in order to come to an agreement on a bail bond.
When a person reaches out to a bail bond agency to help them cover the costs of bail, they typically strike a deal for a surety bond. This involves the person putting up a percentage of the total bail costs along with some form of collateral (such as property or a deed to a car or home). The bail bond agent – backed by a special form of insurance – posts the total bail amount. If the defendant flees or misses his court date, the bail bondsman will keep the collateral and possibly hire a bounty hunter to find the fugitive.
Along with a surety bond, it’s also possible to put up personal property – such as a house – to cover the bail amount. In the case of a home, the court will put a lien on the property in the amount of the bail. If the person skips bail, the court can foreclose on the home and use the proceeds to cover the bail amount.
With so many different options available, it’s important to choose a bail bondsman who will work with you and explain the choices you have. Escape Bail Bonds has been offering bail bonds in Santa Clarita, Los Angeles, Orange County and elsewhere in Southern California for years. We know the local legal system and can help you decide on the bail or bail bond option that is right for your current situation.