Securing your release may not be easy if you are arrested and accused of a criminal offense in El Cajon, CA. Most arrestees for misdemeanor crimes are released without bail, but for those charged with felonies, making bail could be the only option of securing their release. And, generally, felony offenses carry a higher bail amount than misdemeanors that most people cannot afford to pay out of their pockets. If you are in this situation, you can turn to Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds to secure a bond. Our bail agents are responsive in posting bail for clients throughout the city, and within a few hours, you will be out of jail. We also offer a wide range of payment options and flexible payment plans to accommodate your financial situation. Regardless of the time, you can call us, and we will help you out of jail.
What a Bail Bond Is and How It Works
A bail bond is also known as a surety bond. It refers to a payment made to the court by a bonds agency on your behalf as the defendant. Bail refers to the money you have to post to secure your release from custody before your trial date. If, after making bail, you appear at all the required court dates for your case and obey the conditions of your release, the court will refund the bail money. You forfeit the total bail amount if you fail to appear in court at the required dates.
A bail bond works by permitting you to make bail that you would not have been capable of paying. The bail agent posts the entire amount of bail on your behalf. You pay the bail agent a given fraction of the set bail amount, usually 10%. For example, if your bail is $100,000, you will need to pay the agent $10,000 for them to agree to post bail for you. The 10% fee is non-refundable even if you obey all the imposed bail conditions, including making all court appearances. Most El Cajon bail agents usually secure bail bonds with collateral.
Surety bonds are an effective means for you to make bail when you are straining financially to the extent that you cannot pay the set bail amount on your own. For instance, if the judge imposes a bail of $50,000 and you do not have the $50,000 at hand, you can benefit from securing a surety bond.
The El Cajon Bonds Process
The bond process starts with the judge setting bail. Once the judge imposes the amount you are supposed to pay as bail, you can call an El Cajon bail agent. The bail agent, also called a bail bondsman, will need you or your friend/loved one/family member to pay the 10% premium. Once the agent receives this payment, they will initiate the release procedure. Usually, the agent secures the remaining amount of bail with collateral. Providing collateral entails signing an agreement forfeiting your valuable asset to secure the remaining bail value should you jump bail.
If you do not have adequate collateral to secure your bond, the bondsman may request it from your family members or friends. Once the agent has acknowledged receipt of the premium and is content with your collateral, they will make bail on your behalf. Most licensed bondsmen offer several payment options and flexible payment plans if you are incapable of paying the premium. Payment options include debit cards, credit cards, and payment in cash.
The Role of an El Cajon Bail Agent
A bail agent is an individual working for a bail bonds company who posts bail on a defendant’s behalf. Bail bond companies are profit-oriented organizations that make money off the fees they charge clients for bonds services, including posting bail. These companies also profit by taking legal action to possess any property provided to secure the bond (collateral).
If you secure a bond then forfeit the amount due to failing to show up in court, you owe the bail agent the entire bond amount. The bondsman will also exercise their legal right over the collateral securing the bond. The bail agent will usually go to the extent of ensuring you make court appearances before they forfeit the bond. They might even check in on you on the morning you are supposed to appear in court. They may also take the initiative of physically taking you to court themselves.
If you miss even one court date, the judge will likely issue a bench warrant for your arrest, and the police will execute it if they encounter you. If your underlying crime was charged as a misdemeanor, for instance, a first DUI offense, the police are less likely to seek you out to execute the arrest. They will actively search for you if your crime is more serious.
If you satisfy all your requirements to appear in court and comply with the imposed bail conditions, the court will return the bail amount to the bondsman. It's worth repeating that the fee you paid for the bond is non-refundable; therefore, you are not entitled to it. You also will not receive the bond amount since you are not the one who posted bail. But if you posted cash bail or a property bond, the cash or property will be returned to you upon making all the court appearances as required.
Alternatives to Bail Bonds
If you are being detained in pre-trial confinement on bail you cannot afford, you can request the judge to lower the bail amount through a bail hearing. El Cajon defendants held in custody have the right to request a bail hearing within five days of the initial bail setting date. However, if your crime was a violent or serious felony or domestic violence-related crime, the prosecution needs at least two days of receiving written notice prior to the hearing being held. This bail hearing gives you and your criminal defense lawyer the chance to request a bail reduction or OR (own recognizance) release.
The state's criminal justice system gives judges so much discretion when setting bail. However, El Cajon judges must still take these factors into account while setting the bail amount:
- Your capability to pay the bail
- How severe the alleged crime is
- The likelihood that you will make court appearances
- Public Safety
- Your criminal record
Additionally, we have particular serious felonies that necessitate the bail amount to be at least a given amount.
Mistakes You Should Avoid When Hiring El Cajon Bail Bonds Services
While you must act as fast as possible after an arrest, making wrong decisions is likely. If you do not take precautions, the decision may lead to more severe repercussions. Here are the prevalent mistakes you should avoid:
Waiting too Long to Secure a Bond
If you are arrested on the weekend or night, do not wait until business hours to reach out to a bonds company. Most bail agents in El Cajon are available around the clock. Calling a bondsman ensures you do not waste much time while locked up. The procedure of securing a bond can be lengthy, depending on the facts of your case. For instance, you may spend much time looking for a co-signer, working with the court, and signing paperwork before you are released. Your agent will be glad to initial your release process right away.
Traveling When Released on Bail
Except if your travel is not restricted, going out of your jurisdiction without telling the court and your bail agent can result in problems. Missing your days in court could also harm your case. If you must travel, tell the court and agent for how long you intend to be away, your destination, and how they can reach you.
Lying to the Bondsman and the Court
The bondsman will ask you several questions when applying for a bond. These questions are meant to find out if:
- You can afford to pay the whole bond amount
- You will satisfy all your obligations
Answer these questions correctly to avoid bond revocation in the future. If the bail agent revokes the bond, the judge will issue an arrest warrant against you. To secure another bond, you will again have to sign another application and contract, which entails paying another premium. Make sure you cross-check the info you provide to the bail agent before you can post bail.
Failure to Comprehend Bail Conditions as the Co-Signer
Understanding bail bond terms or conditions will help you analyze whether or not you should go ahead and co-sign for the defendant. The bail conditions and terms imposed include:
- The defendant should interact with specific persons or visit particular places
- The condition that the defendant should not contact the supposed victim
- The requirement that the defendant should not drive with any detectable alcohol level in their bloodstream
- The requirement that the accused checks into an in-patient treatment facility
- The accused may be placed under house arrest and will be electronically monitored
- The condition that the defendant have to surrender their passport and driving privilege because their travel will be restricted
- The requirement that the accused must wear a SCRAM (Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring) device
Whereas bail conditions do not have a limit, the judge should not impose the conditions that violate the defendant's constitutional due process rights.
Failure to Assess the Accused as the Co-Signer
The bail agent makes bail so that your friend or relative can be set free from custody. Because of the risk that comes with it, the agent must ensure the law is complied with by requesting collateral. It could be motor vehicles, credit cards, jewelry, real estate, or stocks. The company will confiscate the property if it forfeits the bond amount due to failure to comply. Because you are the one to provide the collateral, you should assess the individual for whom you are co-signing the bond. The defendant ought to:
- Have family obligations and community ties
- Be responsible enough to obey bail conditions, starting with making all the court appearances.
Failure to Ask Your Bail Agent the Right Questions
Most people do not research bail bond providers until they need one. At that moment, they will feel that time is of the essence and have to secure their release as soon as possible. Well, you should not rush the process. Before you call the bail bonds company, you should be well-prepared with the questions you will ask— the right questions. Some of them include;
- How long will it take for you to be released?
- How much will you need for your bond services?
Note that other bail bond agencies charge additional fees such as:
- Processing fee
- Interest on financing
- Late file fees
- Annual premiums
- Posting fees
- Travel expenses
- Notary fees
At Mr Nice Bail Bonds, we do not charge any additional fees. We have only a single flat rate— no hidden charges and no interest. Other agencies might advertise the 10 percent rate that every client must pay. However, they do not tell you that you will also pay other fees. We never charge these extra fees, so you will pay lower charges by working with us.
El Cajon Jail
San Diego County Jail
El Cajon Courthouse
San Diego Central Courthouse
Superior Court of California
Find Reputable Bail Bond Services Near Me
If you have been arrested in El Cajon, CA, and need help posting bail to secure your release as soon as possible, contact us at Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds right away. We operate 24/7, and we will help you whether your arrest came at night, on the weekend, or during holidays. We also offer financing options for bonds as low as 1% down, and our licensed bail agents will work with you to come up with a payment plan to help you out of custody and back to your family and friends as quickly as possible. At times, we can even find a way to offer a no-down-payment bond necessary to secure your release without any money down. Every case is unique, but our professional, friendly bail agents are here to help, whatever the situation. Call us today at 844-400-2245 for more info on how we can help you.