Has your friend decided to contact you from jail to get them out of a tricky situation? If so, you may quickly become familiar with bail bonds. Here is what you need to know about getting your friend out of jail before their court date.
Your first step will be to locate a local bail bondsman. It is common to find their offices near the local jail, but they are also easy to find by searching online. If you are worried about the cost of one bail bond being different from the other, be aware that many states have regulations regarding how much they charge. For instance, Alabama has a 10% mandated bail bond premium, while Colorado has a 15% maximum premium. Being aware of these mandates will give you a good idea about who is being fair.
Be prepared to bring references on yourself so that the bondman knows you are a reliable person. You will be responsible for paying back the bail bond if your friend violates the conditions of bail, so checking your background is equally as important.
It is also a good idea to find out what kind of payment is accepted, and exactly how much that payment will be. For example, the bondman may only accept money orders. You do not want to be caught off guard with the wrong form of payment if it can be avoided.
Your Friend's Responsibilities
When your friend is released from jail, your first job will be to head back to the bondsman to have them fill out their paperwork. The biggest part is signing documents that makes them aware of the bondsman's expectations of your friend, and what is necessary to avoid losing any collateral that was put up for the bail bond.
Your friend must follow the strict orders of their probation. For example, there may be travel restrictions and specific court dates that they must show up for. Violating these requests could cause the court to take the bail bond, which makes you responsible for it.
You may not want to put complete trust in your friend until their court date. Keep up to date on what is happening, and offer to help them get to court on the days they need to show up. It might seem like a bit of hand-holding, but it can help ensure that they are doing their part.
For more information, contact a company like Goldfarb Bonding Agency.