Can you bail someone out with no money?

arrest after charges

Bail for your needs

Most of us go through our lives never thinking we must post emergency bail. It isn’t an everyday occurrence in most circles of society. There are plenty of people that do though, and they keep the emergency bail bonds agencies busy.  

If you never have experienced posting an emergency bail, for yourself or someone you know, then the process is foreign to you. When somebody has been arrested, they will be given a bail amount at an emergency bail hearing. This is money paid to get them out of jail on the condition they will return for their court date. 

The emergency bail can be as small as $100.00 up to thousands, even millions, depending on what the charges are that caused their arrest, following the emergency bail schedule as set by the state or federal government. 

Rarely do people have that kind of cash on them, so they have their one phone call. They can use that to find a family member or friend to post an emergency bail for them. Another option is to see the services of an emergency bail bondsman. After the bond has been posted, it allows the person to leave and carry on with their life, school, work, etc., as they await their court date. 

Is a bail bond a loan?

No, emergency bail bonds are not emergency bail bond loans. A bond is a surety bond, a slip of paper that states you agree to show up for your court date. The amount the arrested agree to pay the bondsman is the fee. When the bondman post bail, it is their guarantee to the court the accused will show up in court, a risk they take. The accused or an indemnitor must sign this paperwork as their guarantee to the bondsman the accused will appear. 

Can you make payments on a bail? 

No, after the court has set the bail amount, it typically has to be paid in full in cash, cashier check, or money order. With a high-set emergency bail, for something like murder charges, a court may allow a percentage of the bail to be paid or accept some type of collateral. 

Do bail bondsmen do payment plans? 

Chances are, if somebody you know needs an emergency bail posted, you may not have the money. Some bail bonds companies will offer a payment plan option to their clients, with an interest rate. There are some bail bond agents that will offer interest-free financing on bail bond loans. 

With or without interest, read the details of the contract before you sign anything. They may or may not run a credit check before authorizing a bail bond loan, and like any loan, your credit rating may affect how much interest you’re charged. Some bail bonds agencies will take collateral as a substitution for cash or other monetary payment. 

What can be used as collateral for a bail bond? 

Depending on the charge, a crime serious enough could require a large emergency bail that cash or other monetary means aren’t easily available. In that case, a court or bail bondsman may accept something for collateral that is of equal or more value. Some things that may be accepted as a tangible collateral are: 

  • Real estate – belonging to the defendant’s or the person putting up the bail. The bail bond agency or the court will hold the deed until the case is finished. 
  • Vehicle titles – must be currently registered with a clear title in hand for vehicles, boats, campers, mobile homes, or utility trailers. As with the real estate collateral, the bail bond agency or the court will hold the title until the case is finished.
  • Art, Coins, Jewelry – this must be of value equal to or more than the emergency bail bond and will be held until the case is finished. These must be authentic, and you may be required to provide a certification of the value of the item offered for collateral. 
gavel and court

Does your bond go down when you stay in jail? 

Yes, usually, but with each case, there are always exceptions. Each time the accused appears in court, the accused attorney can request a bond review for it to be lowered. The court may implement the following conditions with the agreement of lowering the emergency bond: 

  • A daily phone call to the court
  • Weekly drug testing
  • Curfew
  • Attend all court dates
  • Other miscellaneous criteria as determined by the judge 

Arrest and the legal proceedings that follow can confuse and intimidate, including posting an emergency bail. Hiring an experienced defense attorney is always recommended as soon as the arrest happens.  They know the process and can walk you through the steps and advise on how to plea, including posting emergency bail, putting up collateral for the bail, and more. Need help with bail in St. Petersburg, FL? Dial 727-571-9999 today for your bail needs!