Most people understand that the term bail bonds refers to money you pay to get released from jail. What a lot of people do not understand, though, is how they really work. Many people have misunderstandings with bail bonds and the way they work, yet it is vital to understand this subject if you ever need help getting out of jail. Here are four common things about bail bonds that people often misunderstand.
1. You Should Not Use an Agent If You Have the Cash
The first misconception with bail bonds is the idea that you should not turn to a bail bond agent for help if you have enough cash to pay the bail yourself. If you have plenty of money to use for the bail, you might think it is a better idea to use it to pay your bail. However, this is not always the best option. If you hire a bail bond agent even when you have enough money, you will not have to tie up your funds with the matter. Instead, you will have more cash to use for other things, including the legal fees for your lawyer.
2. A Bail Bond Agent Negotiates Bail Amounts
Many people believe that bail bond agents can somehow convince judges to lower bail amounts, but this is not true. Bail bond agents cannot do this, nor will they try. They work with courts and jails, but they cannot negotiate amounts for you. Your criminal attorney might be able to, though.
3. You Need Money to Use Bail Bond Services
Another thing you might believe is that you cannot use a bail bond agent if you have no cash at all. You must pay a fee upfront to use these services, but you can work out other arrangements if you have no money. Many agents accept collateral instead. If you can turn in valuable items, the agent might accept these as your payment. You can get them back by paying cash for them after your release.
4. Bail and Bond Mean the Same Thing
The other thing people misunderstand is the difference between bail and bond. These two terms are similar, but they are not the same. Bail is what you pay to the jail in the form of cash to get out. A bond is what a bail bond agent offers the court to help you get out. A bond is more of an agreement to the court that states you will appear for hearings.
If you ever find yourself in a position where you need to pay bail, you will be glad you know these things. You can learn more about the process or get help when you need it by contacting a bail bond agent.
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