When someone is arrested for a crime, they are normally held in jail until their court date unless the judge agrees to release them on bail. Bail is a set amount of money that is held until the accused’s court date. Since many defendants cannot come up with this sum of money out of their own pockets, they have hire the services of a bail bondsman.
A bail bondsman’s job is to pay a defendant’s bail with a surety bond, ensuring that the defendant can be released from jail. The bondsman charges a fee for this service, usually a percentage of the bail. The bond is paid back to the bondsman after all the proceedings and trial dates surrounding the defendant are over, and the bondsman keeps the fee paid to them as payment.
On the other hand, if the defendant does not appear for their court date, the bond is forfeit. Since it was the bondsman who technically posted the bail, they must be reimbursed by the defendant. The bondsman may also track down and surrender the defendant to the court. If any collateral was used to pay the bond, the defendant can face the loss of their property. To make things worse, any friends or family members of the defendant who cosigned on the bond will be responsible as well.
If you are ever arrested for a crime and cannot make bail by yourself, a bail bondsman can be a life saver. There are certainly some risks involved to hiring a bondsman, and the initial fee is nonrefundable. Since this is usually about 10 percent of the full amount of the bail, this can get expensive if bail is set high enough. Still, it is better than having to pay thousands of dollars out of your own pocket.
There are nearly 15,000 commercial bail bondsman working in the United States, and they are relatively easy to find. Simply search “bondsman Minneapolis MN” or wherever you may be located to find one who may be able to help you when you need it.