Being arrested on suspicion of committing a crime can be devastating. Most people do not relish the thought of spending time in jail while they await their day in court. Bail bonds are designed to provide a temporary release from jail for individuals who have been arrested.
There are many different types of bail bonds available, and there are many factors that can contribute to determining which bond is right for you. Learn more about bail bonds to help ensure you are prepared to utilize these important financial products if you find yourself behind bars in the future.
1. Cash Bonds
A cash bond is typically reserved for bail amounts that are low enough to be paid in full. Once bail has been set by a judge, you will pay the full amount of the bail when using a cash bond.
If you appear in court as scheduled following your release from jail, the full amount of the bail bond will be returned to you. If you fail to make your scheduled court appearances, you will forfeit the bond amount and a warrant will be issued to bring you back to jail.
2. Property Bonds
Individuals who are accused of committing serious crimes will often have a high bail amount. The friends and family members of these individuals may not have the cash needed to pay the bail amount in full. Even the percentage of the bail required by a bondsman may be out of reach for some individuals.
When you don't have enough liquid assets to pay a bail bondsman for his or her services, collateral may be accepted instead. This collateral typically comes in the form of real estate or a vehicle title. If you fail to appear in court, the bondsman will issue a lien against the property used as collateral for your bond.
3. Unsecured Bonds
An unsecured bond is one of the more rare types of bonds that are utilized in helping individuals obtain their release from jail. No money or collateral is exchanged with an unsecured bond. Instead, the individual who has been arrested signs a legal document agreeing to appear in court.
Failure to appear in court will require the individual to pay the full bail amount. Unsecured bonds operate on the honor system, and are reserved for individuals accused of minor crimes or those who do not have an extensive criminal past.