Kansas City Criminal Defense Lawyers
How Bail Bonds Work

How Bail Bonds Work

If you or a loved one has been arrested for a crime, especially a serious offense, you will most likely need to secure a bail bond to be released from custody. Most people are familiar with bail bonds from television shows, movies, and commercials.

What is a Bail?

Bail ocurrs when a defendant or arrestee is released after an arrest, but prior to the end of his or her criminal case. To obtain bail, the defendant or arrestee must pay a certain amount of money to the court, which helps ensure that he or she will return to complete the trial. When the defendant attends their scheduled court date, as stated in the agreement, he or she gets their money back.

If the defendant cannot pay the amount of the bail, they will not be released until the court date and trial. Since trials typically take months to start after the initial arrest, being unable to post bail can make a person’s life quite difficult.

The Bail Bond System

Bail bonds are similar to a personal loan. Once you put down a small percentage of the total amount, a bail bondsman—similar to a loan officer—covers the rest of the money required to post bail.

For example, if your bail is $15,000, you or a family member would need to make a deposit of $2,000. The bail bondsman would then give you the $15,000 needed for your bail.

Keep in mind, most bail companies make it mandatory to offer some sort of collateral to fulfill the deal. This includes items such as the deed to your home, pink slip to your car, or a piece of jewelry. The collateral is used to secure the bail bonds’ loan if you do not show up at your court hearing. If you fail to appear on the court date, you will not get your money back.

As soon as the trial is over, and you obtain your money back from the court, the money is returned to the bail bond company. Due to the inherent financial risks associated with lending bail money, bail bond companies need to take extra precautions to ensure the defendant or arrestee attends all court dates.

The following are additional precautions bail bond companies take:

  1. Have a family member or friend provide the required collateral since bail bondsmen often think the defendant will be less likely to miss a court date if a loved one’s money or property is on the line.
  2. Contact the defendant before each court date to make sure they are aware.
  3. Require the defendant to frequently contact their bail bond office to ensure that he or she hasn't left town.

If you have been arrested for a crime in Kansas, schedule a free consultation with our Kansas City criminal defense lawyers at Stein Law, LLC today.


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