Bail Bondsmen: Who Are They And What Do They Do?

If you or your loved one has never been arrested, you may not know who bondsmen are. A bondsman is a person who helps you post bail upon an arrest. Read on to learn the primary roles and responsibilities of a bondsman.

Assessing Defendant's Qualifications

Once you have made a call to a bondsman for help in posting bail, their first duty is to assess your eligibility. Some factors they consider your application include your credit score, criminal and arrest record, and flight risk status. Next, they will determine if you are capable of paying the bail bond fee. Once they have ascertained that you're qualified, they can start the process of securing your freedom. 

Completing Paperwork

You may not be conversant with the paperwork to be filled when posting bail. But a bondsman has handled the documentation for other prior clients, so they know what exactly needs to be done. Before they begin the documentation, you'll be required to pay a small fee (usually 10% of the total bail amount). Upon completing all legal forms, the bondsman gains approval by the court to represent you on all matters concerning bail. 

Helps with Financing and Payments of Bail Bonds

If you've been arrested but lack the needed funds to post bail, a bondsman comes in handy. They will use their funds to post bail on your behalf to enable you to focus on the case outside jail. However, you might need to commit your property, such as your car or house, as security until the completion of the case. 

They Ensure You Turn Up in Court

One condition for bail bondsmen getting the amount they posted as bail back is that you must turn up in all court hearings. Therefore, they will be in constant communication with you during the duration of the case, so you don't miss any session. If you don't have the means, they might even drive you to court. 

Finding Absent Defendants and Making Arrests

If you don't turn up for court hearings, a bail bondsman will embark on your search. If they manage to find you within the stipulated time, they can get the posted bail bond back. If the bondman finds you but you're still unwilling to attend court hearings, they are allowed by the law to apprehend you and take you to the courthouse. The aim is to ensure you follow through with the case to the end.