When you meet with a bail bondsman for the first time, it is natural to feel anxious, nervous, and possibly a bit overwhelmed. If you have never had to go through the process of securing a bail bond for yourself or a loved one, you might not be sure what questions to ask during your consultation. In our prior blog, we reviewed what you should expect during an initial consultation with a bond professional, and today, in part one of a two part series, we’ll review some important questions that you should ask anyone you are considering working with for a bail bond.
At Future Bail Bonds, our number one priority is reuniting defendants with their families and loved ones. When it comes to bailing your loved one out of jail, we believe you should be as informed as possible on the process. To discover how our services can help you in your time of need, or to learn more about the bail bonds process, contact us today!
Things to Ask During Your Consultation
It is completely normal to feel a little frazzled as you meet with a bail bond company for the first time. If you are unsure what kind of questions to ask, read through the information below for some ideas.
How Do You Handle Bond Forfeiture?
This is the most important question to ask a potential bondsman. When the accused is allowed a pretrial release with a bail bond and fails to appear for his or her court date, California courts can declare that the bail bond is forfeited. In these cases, the bail agent is usually required to pay the remaining bail to the courts. This means if you are the one that took out the bail bond, the bondsman will be looking to you for reimbursement. Knowing how the company typically handles this situation ahead of time is essential. Will they retain any collateral? Send you to collections? Foreclose on your home? Be sure you understand their stance on bond forfeiture.
How Long Have You Been in Business?
This particular question is a good one to ask for several reasons. While a company’s years of experience aren’t always the best indicator of ethical or knowledgeable services, they are a good place to start. If the bondsman you are speaking with is fairly new to the area, ask him or her to explain what background he or she has in the bail industry. It is possible that the owner previously worked for another bond company in the past, or maybe even transferred from another state. The point of this question is to ensure that the company you are considering working with is not a fly-by-night operation.
Has Your License Ever Been Suspended?
Every legitimate bondsman in our state must be licensed by the California Division of Insurance (DOI), and there are many requirements that must be met in order to obtain and renew licensure. All actions are carefully monitored by the DOI, and if a bondsman doesn’t adhere to the requirements, his or her license could be suspended. Beyond this, the California Bail Agents Association (CBBA) has a strict code of ethics that all members are expected to abide by. If the bail agent violates this code, or if he or she commits some other offense, the bail license may be suspended or even revoked by the state.
Ethical Bondsman in San Bernardino
Asking these three questions is essential to making sure you understand what you are getting yourself into as you prepare to help a loved one get out of jail. In our next blog, we’ll review a few more questions that are beneficial to ask in your bond consultation.
If a loved one or friend has been arrested in the San Bernardino area and you are looking for a reliable, ethical, and affordable bail bond company, contact Future Bail Bonds today! Our bondsmen are all licensed and bonded to provide bail services in the state of California, and we are happy to schedule a free consultation in order to meet with you and answer any questions that you have about the process and our company. Give us a call at 909-990-5700 today to get started!