Bailing out a loved one after an arrest can be a risky endeavor. If you've hired a bail bond company to secure your friend or relative's release, you may forfeit your deposit and any items you put up as collateral. Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do if the defendant fails to appear in court or breaks the conditions of bail in any other way. Here are a few things that you should know about what steps you can take.
Contact The Bail Bond Company Immediately
It is in your best interests to help the bail bond company locate the defendant. In some cases, a judge will offer a grace period to locate the defendant before ordering the bail to be forfeited. Provide the company with any and all information that you can think of that might help locate your loved one. This might include the names, addresses and phone numbers of other relatives, friends, and business acquaintances. You should also provide a list of all available assets the defendant might use to travel, such as car makes and models as well as license plate numbers. The more information you provide, the easier it will be to locate the defendant and bring him or her back to appear before the judge.
Hire A Fugitive Recovery Agent
You can also hire a fugitive recovery agent, otherwise known as a bounty hunter, to find the defendant for you. Some bail bond companies employ their own fugitive recovery agents, while others may refer you to an outside company. The agent's job is to track down the defendant if he or she has decided to leave the jurisdiction. While there is some cost associated with hiring one of these agents, remember that you might lose the property you put up as collateral if the defendant is not located. Before you attempt to hire a fugitive recovery agent, be sure to check with the laws in your state. Some states do not allow agents to make arrests, while others don't allow agents to operate at all.
Bring The Defendant In Yourself
It may be possible for you to bring the defendant to the police department for a surrender, which can prevent forfeiture if you bring the person in during the allowed grace period offered by the judge. In the case of a DUI arrest or nonviolent crime, this may be a viable option. However, if your loved one has been charged with a violent crime or if you have any reason to suspect that he or she may become violent, you should rely on the bail bondsman to handle the situation for you. The most important thing is for you to stay safe; money can be replaced.
If you have questions about the bail bond process, as the bondsman before you place a deposit or put up any collateral. He or she can help you understand how the process works and answer any questions you might have. For more information, check with companies like All Night & Day Bailbonds.