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What Happens If You Bail Someone Out and They Go Back to Jail?

Posted on Mar 15th, 2024 by Jesse Kleis 261 Views

In an ideal world, you’ll bail someone out of jail and they’ll follow the terms of their release as stipulated by the court. Most of the time, the terms will require the person to avoid traveling out of state, attend court appearances, and steer clear from committing more crimes. They abide by these rules and their trial ends, meaning there’s nothing for anyone to worry about. 

What happens if you bail someone out and they go back to jail? This can be a common occurrence in California, but what will happen to a) the individual who was arrested, and b) the person who bailed them out? This guide will reveal all by answering some of the most frequently asked questions about how bail bonds work

What Happens If You Sign A Bond And They Run?

Bail bonds are used to help defendants post bail without paying the full amount. To get a bail bond, they will need a co-signer - which could be you. If you sign a bond for someone else, you’re taking liability for the bail bond money. This means you’re responsible for the bond - and for the individual who was arrested. 

If this person jumps bail and runs, you inherit liability for their bail bond. In other words, you’re legally required to pay the full bail amount to the bail bond company that provided it. They then pass the money on to the court as a new arrest warrant is issued for the defendant. 

This is one of the biggest risks involved in signing a bond for someone and it’s why you should think long and hard before doing so. Only become a co-signer if you have full confidence that the defendant will not run or violate other terms of their release. As long as they attend court and follow the rules, you’ll be fine. 

What Happens To A Bail Bond When Someone Goes Back To Jail?

As mentioned above, an arrest warrant will be issued when an individual jumps bail. The authorities will track them down and put them back in jail - but what happens to their original bail bond in this situation? 

The initial bail bond gets revoked and the person will be forced to remain in jail until their trial concludes. This is why the co-signer will need to pay the full bail amount as it no longer technically exists and the guarantee was broken. 

It’s important to understand that the arrested individual cannot be released on bail if someone pays for the original bond again. In most cases, the court will not issue another bail bond as they don’t trust the individual to comply. If a new bail amount is set, it will be far higher than the original one due to the increased risk this individual now carries. 

How Will Being Arrested While Out On Bail Affect A Defendant?

Defendants are encouraged to follow all the terms of their release to the letter of the law as strictly as possible. Why? Because being arrested while out on bail will have potentially grave consequences for the individual. 

Already, it leads to financial complications for the person and their co-signer. This could mean they’ve forced someone who cares about them to pay thousands of dollars as the bail is revoked. Beyond this, going back to jail after you’ve been released on bail can lead to the following problems: 

  • Forced Jail Time - The whole purpose of bail is to get you out of jail so you’re not lingering in a cell for days or weeks. You post bail, spend time with your family, and get ready for a court case. When arrested while out on bail, you’ll likely have to experience some forced jail time. It could be weeks before you’re released, pending the results of your trial. 
  • Additional Charges - Initially, you were charged with one criminal offense. Skipping bail adds at least one other charge to your record, meaning you’re being tried for multiple things. This can turn a simple defense case into something much more challenging for your legal team. 
  • Lower Chance Of A Positive Verdict - The fact that you were arrested after previously being arrested and released on bail won’t look good in a court of law. If your case happens in front of a jury, there’s a strong chance they’ll look badly at your situation given the facts. Even if there isn’t a jury, a judge is more likely to be strict with you when they see that you skipped bail and got arrested again. The chances of a positive verdict from your case are far lower. 

How To Avoid Going Back To Jail While Out On Bail

Avoiding more jail time when you (or someone you know) have been released on bail is simple. All you need to do is follow the rules outlined in the terms of your release. They will be specific to your situation and may include strict guidelines depending on what you were arrested for. 

Nevertheless, the ultimate rule is to attend all court appearances. This is the most common way someone can void their bail and get arrested again. Always be aware of when you must appear in court and attend every date. If you can’t go for a valid reason, contact your bail bond agent and they will speak to the court to see if the date can be postponed. 

There could be a situation when you miss court dates without realizing and an arrest warrant is issued. If this happens, comply with the law and hand yourself in. Trying to flee from the authorities or offering resistance will only result in more charges and further legal problems. 

Final Thoughts

You should take some key points away from this guide. First of all, you can face jail time again after posting bail. Secondly, if you co-sign a bail bond, you’ll be responsible for paying it off if the defendant gets arrested while on bail. Thirdly, avoiding jail time is as easy as obliging with the terms of your release. 

If you have any further questions about this topic, please get in touch with the Mr. Nice Guy Bail Bonds team and we’ll help you out. 

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About The Author

Jesse Kleis is a licensed California Bail Agent for Mr. Nice Guy Bail Bonds with over 10 years’ experience working in all aspects of the bail industry. He holds both a Bachelors and Masters of Arts in Sociology from California State University. Alongside his role in the bail industry he continues to hold a formal role in professional education as a Sociology Instructor.

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