FAQ’s

Does a bail bond company require anything else from its clients prior to court hearings?

Potentially, a bail bond company is liable for a large sum of money, should the defendant decide to skip court appointments. Often bail bond companies require defendants to check in on a regular basis, or agree to be monitored as terms of the loan.

What happens if a defendant does not show up for their court appearances?

Often a warrant is issued for their arrest. If a bond company was used to secure their release, the bond company will work to locate the client and return them to jail.

How much is the fee when working with a bail bond company?

Typically the fee when working with a bail bond company is 10% of the bail amount.

What happens to me if I assist a defendant in skipping court dates?

Harboring a fugitive is against the law. If you are aware of someone who has jumped bail, you should alert local law enforcement.

How many fugitives are found by bounty hunters in the United States?

Recent statistics show about 30,000 bail jumpers are apprehended by bounty hunters every year– about 90% of total fugitives who flee.

What are the requirements to become a bounty hunter?

While the government does not regulate bounty hunters, typically applicants must be at least 18 years of age, never convicted of a felony, able to provide character references, and registered with local law officials.

Who receives bond money if a suspect misses a court date

If a suspect chooses not to adhere to the bail agreement and skips court appearances, the bond amount is forfeited to the court, leaving the bail agency responsible for the bond amount.

What do “Failure to Appear” charges mean

If a suspect does not appear for scheduled court appearances, and is not located via a bench warrant, “Failure to Appear” charges could be added against them. Additional charges usually match the severity of the original offense.

What is a bench warrant

When a defendant misses a court date, a judge may issue a bench warrant, directing law enforcement agents to take the suspect into custody to address the failure to appear in court charges.

What is a flight risk?

If a suspect has poor previous conduct in the court system, no family ties in the community, little employment history, strained financial resources, and/or a compromised reputation, there is a higher risk of the defendant failing to appear in court. This factor plays a role in determining bail and release.

When is bail paid?

After a suspect is booked and bail is set, the defendant may pay and be released from jail when approved by the court.

Are all the bail amounts set the same for similar crimes?

No. While standard bail amounts are common, a judges discretion plays a role in each individual case.

Who Determines Bail Amounts?

Judges set bail amounts by taking a variety of factors into consideration, including the severity of the crime, the defendant’s behavior, and the safety of the community.

Where did the Miranda Rights come from?

Miranda Rights are named after Ernesto Arturo Miranda, an Arizona man who was convicted of multiple felonies based on a confession he made during an interrogation. He didn’t realize he had the right to remain silent.

What should I respond when I’m read my rights?

Anything you say to a police officer, or that is heard on camera inside of the police car, can be used against you in a court of law. Your Miranda Rights will not apply unless you are saying them in response to a direct question from the officer. Silence is always a good option.

Can You Be Interrogated without Being Read Your Miranda Rights?

Yes, officers can interrogate you without reading Miranda Rights. However, if they fail to read you these rights, they are unable to use your statements as evidence against you in a court of law. If this occurs, officers are still able to use the information you gave them to guide their investigation of the crime in which you are accused. This is why it is important that you know your Miranda Rights regardless if they are read to you or not.

When Should You Be Read Your Miranda Rights?

Miranda Rights are read to a suspect prior to direct questioning. This interrogation can take place with or without an arrest, and may take place at the scene of the crime, or at a law enforcement agency. If you are arrested and not read your rights while the arrest is taking place, this doesn’t mean you won’t be read your rights during questioning.

What is the Purpose of Miranda Rights

The purpose of the Miranda Rights is to prevent law enforcement agents from forcing individuals being interrogated to incriminate themselves. The Miranda Rights were created to assist in defending the 5th Amendment (right against compelled self-incrimination) as well as uphold the 6th Amendment (individual’s right to counsel).

What is the main difference in each bail bond option?

Cash bail is money deposited with the court to secure a defendants return. If a defendant misses court dates or other conditions of release, they will return to jail

Commercial Bail is a surety, held liable to ensure the defendant appear in court. If a defendant misses appearances, the bail bond company is responsible.

A Government funded pretrial release program holds little obligation to the defendants, with conditions of release vary depending on the type of crime. (No additional fees or surties are required).

What is the purpose of Bail?

The purpose of bail is to secure a defendant’s attendance in court.  Not to raise funds for the state or to collect pre-paid fines. The counties and judges that are utilizing cash bail are simply wrong.   Defendants on cash bail have a much higher rate of missing court, becoming fugitives with warrants, likely to commit crimes. In many cases, they cannot get jobs, collect unemployment or other benefits. If these fugitives are arrested in other jurisdictions, they have to be transported back to the county and state where the warrant was issued, all at the cost of the taxpayer.

What is the recommended form of release option?

Per the Minnesota Constitution, Article 1, Section 7:

All persons before conviction shall be bailable by sufficient SURTIES, except for capital offenses when the proof is evident or the presumption great.  

(Please note the word “Surety.”)

What type of bail bond does AAA Bail Bonds specialize in?

AAA Bail Bonds specializes in Commercial Bail Bonds.

If I bail somebody out of jail, what is my responsibility?
  1. Paying a fee to the bail bond company.
  2. Cosigning for the bail bond and ensuring its payments and agreements are upheld until the case is resolved. This may include attending hearings and court dates, as well as additional financial support
Is the bail bond industry in Minnesota regulated? And who regulates it?

Who regulates the MN Bail Bond Industry? The MN Department of Commerce regulates the licensing, sales practices, and auditing of each bail bond company. The State Court Administrators Office (SCAO) oversees the relationship each company has with the court system

How do you obtain a license to become a bail bond agent? Currently, to become a bail bond agent, one must apply for a license from the Department of Commerce and be approved by the State Court Administrator’s Office (SCAO).  These steps require an applicant to complete general paperwork and pay applicable fees, followed by a background check.

 

How do you obtain a license to become a bail bond agent?

How do you obtain a license to become a bail bond agent? Currently, to become a bail bond agent, one must apply for a license from the Department of Commerce and be approved by the State Court Administrator’s Office (SCAO).  These steps require an applicant to complete general paperwork and pay applicable fees, followed by a background check.

How do I clear a warrant?

If you or a loved one learn that there is an arrest warrant, we can help. In addition to offering free warrant checks, we can place a bail bond to clear the warrant and have a new court date scheduled. In most cases, we can do this without the defendant going to jail.

What happens if I am arrested and released from jail without being charged with a crime?

If this happens it is possible that the court will require a bail bond at your first appearance. If this is a concern of yours, or if your attorney has informed you that this will happen, we can meet with you prior to your court date and arrange a bail bond.

What can you tell me about Alcohol Home Monitoring?

Alcohol Home Monitoring and other conditions can be set by a judge as part of a bail requirement or in place of a bail bond. The home monitor is a devise that is attached to a land-line telephone and is used to monitor alcohol in the defendants system. The defendant will have to breath into the devise several times a day as required by the court. Typically, the defendant will have this requirement for several months, must breath into the device seven days a week, and there is a daily cost. If allowed by the court, a bail bond can be placed and the condition of the Alcohol Home Monitor is waved.

What if the defendant accidentally misses court or is unable to appear in court?

This should be avoided if possible. When a defendant fails to appear for a scheduled court hearing, the judge will forfeit the bail bond and declare the entire bail amount due to the court. There are costs involved in petitioning the court to reinstate the bail bond that may be passed on to the defendant and cosigner. However, if a defendant does miss court, it’s imperative that the bail bond company be notified immediately and that the defendant and cosigner work with the bail bond company to resolve the situation right away.

Can a bond be used for fines or court costs?

No! A bail bond only guarantees that the defendant makes all court appearances. Fines, restitution, court costs, etc are the responsibility of the defendant- our bond CANNOT be taken to satisfy these costs because the bail bond only guarantees court appearances.

Should I hire an attorney?

The process of being arrested and put on trial for a crime is a process that will affect your life in many ways. You will be exposed to new situations and difficult vocabulary and will be glad to have a criminal defense attorney by your side from the start. Knowing what is coming in the process will be helpful as you experience all that is involved.

How do I get out of jail? How does bail work?

Generally, a bail bond company will be contacted by phone to begin the bail procedure. During the initial phone consultation, we will ask for information about your situation in order to determine the risk involved in the bond and begin the approval process.

Once the bail bond is approved, the customer will need to sign basic bail bond documents including an application, Indemnity Agreement, and other related documents. After the paperwork is finalized and payment has been made, a licensed bondsman will “post” the bail bond at the jail.

What is a bail bond?

A bail bond, technically called a “surety bond”, is a contractual undertaking guaranteed by a state licensed bail bailbondsman who is backed by an insurance company. The bail agent guarantees to the court payment of the full amount of the bond if the defendant fails to appear for their scheduled court appearances.

Why are the cost of bail bonds strictly 10% in Minnesota, when bail agents were able to negotiate the price prior to January 1, 2016?

In Minnesota, all bail bond companies must be contracted with, and financially backed by, a surety company.  A surety company is an insurer that issues Powers Of Attorney to the bail bond companies that they contract with, and these Powers of Attorney must be attached to a bail bond when it is posted to secure the release of a defendant from jail.  That being said, effective January 1, 2016, the Minnesota Department of Commerce, which oversees the insurance and bail bond industries, issued a Consent Order.  This Consent Order laid out several rules that all surety and bail bond companies must follow.  One of these rules was that the surety companies must file the percentage (rate) that the bail bond companies they are associated with are going to charge for a bail bond.  These rates had to be approved by the Department of Commerce, and the only rate that was approved was ten percent (10%).

What are Bounty Hunters or Fugitive Recovery Agents?

When a bail bond company posts a bail bond for somebody who is in jail, or to quash a warrant for a person wanted by the law, that bail bond represents a promise to the court that the principal, or defendant, will appear at all scheduled hearings until the case is settled. If the defendant fails to appear, the judge may “Forfeit” the bail bond, at which time the bail bond company must either return the defendant to jail, post another bail bond to quash the warrant (if the judge gives that as an option), or pay the face amount of the bail bond. In some cases, the only option is to return the defendant back to jail. In that event, the bail bond company may hire a Bounty Hunter aka Fugitive Recovery Agent.

In most cases, bounty hunters are well trained in finding people that are trying not to be found. They typically are subscribers to on-line services that cater to the fugitive recovery industry, are well connected to law enforcement, and are privy to personal information about the person they are seeking. Their job is to locate the defendant and deliver him\her back to jail, and they are paid a fee for doing so. Those fees are then passed on to the cosigner on the bail bond.