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Understanding the Process - How Bail Bonds Work

BAIL is a dollar amount placed upon a defendant, by the court, to give them a financial reason not to flee. A BAIL BOND is a contract between a Bail Bond Company, the Court, the bail Co-signer, and the defendant. This contract guarantees the court that the defendant will show up for all court dates, hearings, and follow all conditions placed upon them. The contract is executed for a fee set by the state in which the defendant is incarcerated. New Jersey law set the fee at 10% of the bail amount. What this means is that there is a choice to use a Bail Bond Company, and pay the 10% fee, or the full amount can be paid at the location of incarceration. The fee paid to the bondsman is not refundable, however if the full amount was paid to the court/jail, it could be returned at the completion of the case. Sometimes, the Bail Bond Company will also ask for collateral to secure the bond. Collateral can be taken in the form of cash or real property. This collateral will be returned at the completion of the case.

The bail amount will be set by the Judge, who will take many things into consideration, including how severe the crime was, and the defendant's level of flight risk. Upon receiving the 10% fee, and completing all the required paperwork, the Bail Agent will post the bond at the site where the defendant is incarcerated. Once released, the defendant will have some paperwork to review and fill out, and then they will be photographed.

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Co-signers should understand that they share the responsibility in making sure that the defendant attends all court dates and hearings. The co-signer will also be aware of the conditions that the Bail Company places on the defendant in conjunction with those mandated by the court. Should the defendant miss a court appearance, or fail to check in with the Bail Company as scheduled, then the defendant will be listed as a fugitive and the co-signer will be responsible for the full amount of the bail. It should also be understood that the bail company will at that point hire Fugitive Recovery Agents, and collection services. The co-signer will be responsible for the fees associated with both of those services plus any additional legal fees that occur.

After the case is closed by the judge, and sentence has been rendered, the bail bond will be dissolved and the only obligation left to the Bail Bond Company will be any outstanding fees that were part of the agreement.

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Pre-Arrest Services
If it comes to your attention that you have a warrant for your arrest, you should immediately make arrangements to surrender yourself to the jurisdiction in which you are being sought. More...

Post-Arrest Services
After a person is arrested, they are brought in front of a Judge who will determine what amount of Bail will be placed upon the defendant. More...

Understanding the Process
BAIL is a dollar amount placed upon a defendant, by the court, to give them a financial reason not to flee. More...

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