How Bail Works in Marin County
Most people have never thought of how bail works because most people think they’ll never need it — or the circumstances the surround the bail process is something they don’t want to think about it. Most people never think that they’ll ever be arrested, or they want to avoid thinking that they may be involved in a crime that requires arrest and incarceration.
Like so many other things, the worst time to start thinking about bail is when you’re arrested or someone you know calls you in the middle of the night looking for help. The important thing to keep in mind about bail is that it offers the accused the opportunity to not be incarcerated between the time that they’ve been booked and when their court hearings begin. If the person can’t make bail, they will have to wait for their court dates in jail — and if they’re found innocent, they still would have spent time in incarceration.
There are two ways to make bail. One is to pay the entire amount the court decrees. This could be in the hundreds to thousands of dollars. In some extreme cases, the amount could be in the millions of dollars. Not many people have that kind of money on hand.
The other alternative is to contact a bail bond company. Bail bond companies work with insurance companies to write “surety bonds.” These bonds are promises to the court that the person in question will make their required court dates. The fees for these bonds are usually 10 percent. In the cases of major crimes where there’s the possibility that the defendant might flee, collateral in the form of property or real estate is often required. This is how most people avoid being in jail until their trial date.
While most people make their required court dates, some people skip them. If the reason is justifiable, such as a family emergency or car trouble, it won’t cause any problems. However, if the defendant intentionally misses their date, the court will issue a warrant for their arrest. The bail bond company will be responsible for the entire bail amount and they will hire bounty hunters to find and return the defendant to court. Bounty hunters have powers beyond those of police to find and return fugitives to face their charges.
If you feel you need a bail bond company, don’t wait until the call from your friend or family member, and don’t wait until you’re in the backseat of a police car. Contact a bail bonds company now.