For the most part, the paperwork aspect of bail bonds is most arduous. It could make or break the whole process. Accurate forms are vital for accepting the defendant’s bail request. That is why it is crucial to understand the forms and applications the defendant need to sign. Moreover, it is important to know which information are mandatory, and which are not.
The bail bond company hold most of the responsibility for the acceptance of the bail. As a result, bail bond agencies pay considerable attention to creating legally valid surety bond forms. On the other hand, defendants as well need to understand the technicalities before committing to the agreement.
The Contractors in the Bail Bond Agreement
The bail bond agreement is a contract of indemnity. There are two sides in most contracts. On the one hand, the bail Indemnitor, the cosigner or cosigners who pay the fees. Whereas, the bond agency, who is responsible for posting the bail. Both the Indemnitor and the company jointly pledge to the court that the defendant will show up when the court requires his presence and follow any rules while out on bail.
The Standard Bail Bond Forms
The underlying contract determines the fees for services and the agreements between the Indemnitors and the bail agency. It is mandatory for the Indemnitor and the defendant to provide complete financial information in the contract. The bail bonds person is legally required to clearly identify the information. However, not all information is mandatory, it varies from company to company, and state to state. Even more, besides the original contract, the firm could ask the defendant or his Indemnitor to fill an application. In some cases, it is optional. Therefore, the defendant and his Indemnitor need to understand the difference.
The Different Types of Bail Bond Forms
- The Bail Bond Agreement: The initial contract between one or more Indemnitors and the bail agency where they jointly assume responsibility for the appearance of the defendant in all court appearances. This agreement provides the framework for both the bond firm and the Indemnitors. It determines the terms of services, the fees, and the obligations of all parties.
- Cash Bail Agreement: Not all bail agencies require this agreement as it is similar to the Bail Bond Agreement, the principal difference is that the fees are paid in cash to the company rather than other options of payment.
- Indemnitor/Guarantor Agreement: A straightforward document that makes clear that the signer of the Bail Bond Agreement Contract accepts the responsibility for the defendant’s appearance in court. It also clarifies that if the defendant “skips bail,” the Indemnitor will assume full financial responsibility.
- Credit Card Non-Dispute: This form is needed if the Indemnitor is using a credit card to make the payment of the premium due on a bail bond.
These are the most common forms, but many bond companies may skip any of them or require additional forms depending on the situation. In all cases, most of the companies will require a collateral. Collateral is “something pledged as security for repayment of a loan, to be forfeited in the event of a default.” A guarantee for the bail bond company that protects its rights if the defendant flees or fails to show up in the court.
Forms for Bail Bonds Insured with Real Estate
Most companies do not require collateral by default, however, when they do need an insurance it usually is in the form of a real estate asset. Often the real property is the Indemnitor’s or the defendant’s himself.
In that particular case, the bail company requires more paperwork which allows the Indemnitor’s to give permission to the company to use the home as collateral. That is to say, the Indemnitor understand and agree to give that permission.
- Deed of Trust: In that case, a third party which is a Surety company (an insurance company) hold on the property for the bail bonds company. Until the Indemnitor or defendant cover all expenses, this is for the protection of the other main two parties, the Indemnitor, and the bail bondsman. At the same time, the bail bondsman works in the capacity of a notary.
- Disclosure Statement: A one-page document in plain English for the Indemnitor. The purpose is to make sure he understands that there is a lien on the property. Consequently, the signer cannot act by selling or renting the property.
- Privacy Disclosure: Most agencies will require signing a Privacy Disclosure form. Perhaps due to the sensitivity of the information in the agreements. It is for the protection of all parties involved.
On the whole, the necessary contracts are the same for all bail bondsman; they may come in different names. However, the basic principles apply almost everywhere. As a final note, it is crucial to have copies of every document the defendant or his Indemnitor\s sign.