What is a Bail Bond Agreement
A Bail Bond Agreement is unlike any other type of contract most people will ever sign. The person who signs for a bail bond is typically called an indemnitor or co-signer. The indemnitor is signing to guarantee to the bail bond company that the person they bailed out will make all required court appearances. If that person fails to appear in court it can become a huge financial burden. Fortunately, most people who are bailed out do make all of their court appearances.
Two Important Parts Of The Bail Bond Contract
Bail bond companies typically require that a friend or family member sign a Bail Bond Agreement to guarantee the bail bond. The sole purpose of a bail bond is to guarantee the defendant appears in court each and every time they are required to do so. A person who signs a Bail Bond Agreement is financially responsible for
BAIL BOND PREMIUM
The Indemnitor(s) are responsible for payment of the bail bond premium. This applies to every person that signs the bail bond agreement, including the defendant. The bail bond company can take steps to collect the money from any or all of the people who signed the contract. They are jointly and severally liable. This means the money can be collected from any and all of the people who sign to guarantee the bail bond.
COLLATERAL AND/OR SIGNATURE GUARANTEE
A person who signs a Bail Bond Agreement is financially responsible for the full amount of the bail bond if the defendant fails to appear for any reason. When a defendant fails to appear, the judge issues a bench warrant and forfeits the bail bond. The court clerk mails a “Notice of Forfeiture” to the bail bond company. If the defendant fails to appear and cannot be returned to court within the time specified by law (usually six months) the court will demand the full amount of the bail bond from any and all of the people who signed the Bail Bond Agreement. The bail bond company does not have to wait six months before they can demand payment from the person who signed the bail bond agreement. Any person who signs the bail bond agreement is responsible for any costs incurred by the bail bond company as a result of any default in the bail bond contract.
To learn more about the bail bond process and what happens after a bail bond agreement is signed see the bail bond process page.