Are you preparing to bail a friend or loved one out of jail? Then you’ve no doubt wondered where exactly the money involved in the bail process goes. Will you get your money back when the case is over? Or will you never see it again? What happens to the money if the person you’re bailing out ends up violating the terms of their bail agreement?
Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about what happens to the money you supply to bail someone out of jail.
Getting a Surety Bond to Post Bail
When you visit a bail agent for help getting a friend or loved one out of jail, the agent will issue you what’s known as a surety bond. But to secure that bond, you must pay a fee, which typically amounts to about 10% of the defendant’s total bail amount.
That fee is nonrefundable, so no matter how much you’re required to pay the bail agent to secure the bond, you won’t be seeing that money again. Think of it as payment for services rendered — bail agents have to feed themselves and their families too.
Posting Cash Bail With the Court
If you have the money to post cash bail with the court, you can pay the total amount of the defendant’s bail directly to the clerk. When you post cash bail for your friend or loved one, the money you supply will be held by the court until the conclusion of the defendant’s case. Once the case is over — even if the defendant is found guilty — you’ll get your money back, provided the defendant does not violate the terms of his or her bail agreement.
What Happens to the Bail Money If the Defendant Violates Bail?
Posting bail grants the defendant a conditional release from incarceration, which means the release comes with specific terms the defendant must adhere to. One of those terms is a requirement to appear in court for various hearings associated with the case. Other terms typically include conditions related to the nature of the alleged crime.
If the defendant fails to show up in court for even a single court date (or is caught violating any of their other bail terms), the money supplied for bail becomes forfeit. That means that as soon as the defendant violates the conditions, you will lose any money you supplied to get your friend or loved one out of jail. The court will keep the bail money, and the defendant will be returned to jail and may or may not be given the opportunity to post again.
Paying for Fines, Restitution, and Court Costs
It’s important to note that when someone goes to jail, there are expenses associated with the case. There may also be expenses associated with the crime in question if the defendant is convicted. When you post bail for someone, the court may decide to use a portion of the bail funds to cover any applicable fines, court costs, or restitution for the victim(s) of the defendant’s crime. Once those costs are paid, you’ll receive the remaining balance of the bail money you paid.
Need a Bail Bond on the Mississippi Gulf Coast?
If you need to bail a friend or loved one out of jail, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team at D&D Bail Bonds. We service the entire Mississippi Gulf Coast, and our licensed bail agents are available 24/7 for your convenience. To learn more or get started, call our office today at [phone] or contact us to set up a free consultation.