Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What is Bond? How can I bail someone out of jail?

I am playing around with the blog formats so I will be posting this question and answer in video format.  I will also give a brief text answer as well.  Keep writing in questions and I will keep up with the answers as best I can.  If you have a crime specific question please visit , for more answers.

Q:  My neighbor was arrested for stealing and now he is out of jail waiting on his trial.  He said he is out on bail or bond.  What does that mean and how does it work?

A: When someone is arrested for a crime there will be a duration of time between their arrest and the time that they go to trail.  It is not always necessary for an accused person to stay in jail waiting on trial, especially since that can sometimes take months.  The judge will release accused persons if he/she is confident that they will return to face the charges.  Often a judge will require that a person put up money or something of value to assure that they will return.  This is called a bond.  The judge will determine an amount that adequately assures that the person will return to court on their next court date then the person will put up that amount and be released from custody.  If they fail to return to court then the bond/collateral can be forfeited.

Many times a person can not afford the amount the judge is requiring them to put up as collateral so they can not be released.  This is where a bail bondsman comes in.  A Bondsman will contract with the accused person's family and will charge a fee based on the risk involved.  Once a fee is negotiated and paid then the bondsman will go into the court and put up the accused persons bond, thus allowing them to get out of jail.  If they do not return then the bondsman will be out his bond.


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