Questions About Bail Bonds

Bail Bonds for San Antonio

Q.The definition of a bail bond and its function are what?

A. A bail bond is money guaranteed to a court in an attempt to ensure that the defendant will appear for all required court dates until the completion of the case.  Failure to act in accordance to these rules could be grounds for having an arrest warrant issued and bail bonds forfeited.

Q. What is a bails bondsman?

A. This person or entity holds an official permit which allows him to write or post bail on behalf of a Surety or Insurance Company as an assurance for bail in the place a fee.  This fee is usually 10% of the total bail amount.

Q. What are the four basic release options when someone is arrested?

A. 1. Cash Bail: It simply means that the total amount of the bail (not 10%) must be given to the court in the form of cash. This is used to sway the defendant to come to court.  The money is held until the close of the case, and granted the defendant appears for all court dates, the money is returned.

2. Surety Bond:  It’s the most common one of all bonds, and is a written agreement with a bail agent who puts up a bond for the entire bail amount.  It’s a monetary guarantee that the defendant will appear for all court dates.

3. Release on Own Recognizance (O.R.) Available for low risk individuals, it is for individuals with no prior criminal record or non-violent offenses.

4. Release on Citation (Cite Out): Similar to a traffic citation, it is issued with the defendant being placed in custody It is up to the defendant to appear in court for court dates and/or proceedings.

Q. Can the premium for the bail bond be refunded?

A.  It cannot.  This is earned when after the defendant is released and is the Bail Agent’s fee for putting up the bond.

Q. What is collateral for a bail bond?

A. This is anything of value (ex. Home, car, assets, etc.)that is posted to secure a Bail Bond.  Collateral is returned after the bond has been satisfied.

Q. What is the length of time a Bail Bond is good for?

A. 1 year. If the court case goes longer than 1 year, additional costs must be paid in order to keep the bond active.

Q. What happens when a defendant makes bail, but doesn’t appear in court?

A. In this case, an arrest warrant may be issued and bail bond privileges denied.

Q. What happens in cases where the defendant does not make bail?

A. The defendant is to remain in court until the resolution of the court case.

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Hot To Pay for a Bail Bond

Price is usually not an issue when the goal is to get out of jail. Whatever it costs is worth it to an incarcerated defendant or his or her family members. The reality, however, is that getting bail is an expensive matter. Law Offices of Jesus R. Lopez offers many ways to pay for a bail bond, including personal and local checks, major credit cards, and financing plans.

Designating a Co-Signer/Indemnitor

Planning ahead for the possible occurrence of a DWI arrest makes release from jail occur sooner rather than later. The defendant gets to make one phone call which usually goes to a person who can take responsibility for making financial arrangements with a San Antonio bail bonds company.

As a co-signer, the indemnitor is responsible for paying a non-refundable fee of about 10% of the bail to a bondsman. For a $10,000 bail, $1,000 would be due at the outset to get the release process started.

Making the Initial Payment with a Card, Check, or Finance Plan

Even if the initial bail bond payment is only a tenth of a $10,000 bail amount, coming up with $1,000 is not an easy job for many people. Law Offices of Jesus R. Lopez offers credit terms in addition to checks, transfers from Western Union and these credit cards:

  • American Express
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Discover

Payment with Collateral on Bond

Large amounts of bail may require a co-signer to take a different route to payment. A lien on a property that has a value equal to 10% of bail is usually acceptable.

Properties that are often used as collateral include:

  • electronic equipment
  • jewelry
  • a boat or recreational vehicle
  • a home
  • vacant land

The co-signer regains ownership of collateral when the full bail bond payment is complete.

If you ever need to get a friend, loved one, or family member out of jail, call Law Offices of Jesus R. Lopez at 210-224-5245.


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Warnings About Skipping on San Antonio Bail Bonds

The most important thing a defendant will want to keep in mind when they are released from jail on a San Antonio bail bond is that their legal troubles are not over and done with.  They will still need to appear before a judge on a set date and time in order to resolve their case.  This should be considered a number one priority.

The person who cosigns the Riverside bail bonds paperwork is taking responsibility for two important things.  The first is that the defendant will make good on this obligation.  The second is for payment of the bondsman’s fee.  If the defendant skips bail, this person could find themselves on the hook for the full bail amount.

When a person fails to appear in court a bench warrant will be issued for their immediate arrest.  This means they can be taken into custody on any day at any time for any reason.  Warrant checks are frequently performed during routine traffic stops, at US border crossings, on cruise ships at ports of call and on passengers who are flying to and from international destinations.  Warrants never expire and they are good in all 50 states.

If the defendant missed court because of a mistake, this can be easily fixed.  They will simply want to call their bondsman as quickly as possible.  The bondsman will be able to give them a piece of paper.  This will need to be posted with the court.  It will allow for the warrant to be lifted, the bond to be reinstated and for the case to be put back on the calender.   On the other hand, if they willfully decided to evade justice, this is where problems arise.

The cosigner and the bondsman will have up to 180 days to get the defendant back into the system.   The cosigner will be responsible for covering all related search costs including expenses incurred by a bail recovery agent, or bounty hunter.  This can often range into the thousands, if not tens of thousands of dollars.  If they put up collateral, the collateral will be considered forfeited.  If they put their house up, the home could be foreclosed on.  If they turned over the pink slip to  a car, the vehicle can be confiscated.

If the cosigner isn’t able to cover these costs their account will be turned over to collections. This will have a negative impact on their credit report.  Negative marks can stay on a person’s credit report for up to 7 years.

If you have additional questions about what happens when a person skips bail be sure to ask a reputable bondsman.


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DWI Bail Bonds Bexar County San Antonio

When you get a DWI your in for a lot of surprises.  Not only is it expensive to hire a lawyer, deal with legal proceedings and more, the cost of DWI bail bonds can be high.  The average DWI bail cost is $1,000.  That is for a first offense.  For 2nd and 3rd offenses DWI bail bonds can be $5,000 or more.


If you’re lucky and are a first time offender (no prior DIWS) you might just get to go home without paying anything.  It is not always this way but sometimes you are given a contract that you will attend all court hearings and comply with local authorities on anything they might need.  Although, even if it is your first DWI but you have a past criminal record or history of offenses, the chance of you getting off without a bail bond are slim.


So what do you do if you need a bail bond?


Call your local bail bonds agency and begin the process of securing a bail bond.  The bail bondsman is going to be working with you over the next few months.  They will be showing up at your hearings, trials and more.  They are taking responsibility over you.  Another words if you don’t show they will be coming for you.  It is not uncommon for bail companies to take collateral like a car title or any other asset you may have.


Getting a bail bond for DWI is a relatively simple process unless it has been charged as a felony.  Some reasons a bail bond could be considered a felony over a misdemeanor are: kids or children in the car, prior DWIs, school zones, suspended licesnes and a variety of other factors.


If you show up to all your trials and court proceedings the court usually refunds the bail money to the bail company.   When this happens the bail company will return any collateral they might owe you.  They will also keep a percentage of the fee you paid for their services.


If you don’t pay then yes it is true, someone like “Dog the Bounty Hunter” might come after you.  Make sure you go to all court proceedings and comply with all authorities to make sure this doesn’t happen to you.


If you have been arrested for a DWI and need a bail bond then call 24-7 Law Offices of Jesus R Lopez.  We issue DWI bail bonds in Bexar County.

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San Antonio Bail Bonds Money is Not Refunded if The Person Dies

If we bail someone out of jail and that person dies before they are due to appear in court, will the fee we paid to the bondsman be refunded?  I’ve never done this before and I’m not entirely clear on how the process works.

The fee you pay to a San Antonio Bail Bonds company is nonrefundable.  It is not something that will be returned if the defendant passes away, if their case is dismissed or if the District Attorney decides not to file charges.  That fee, also called a premium, is earned by the person who posted the bond at the time the defendant is released from custody.  If the bondsman you hired helped you with a monthly payment plan you will still be required to pay as agreed.  If you stop making payments your account will go into collections and that will have a negative impact on your credit score.

On the other hand, if you paid cash bail with the jail or the court, that sum will be refunded to the person who posted it less administrative fees. You will want to keep in mind that the refund will not be immediate and it may take several months to be processed.


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