If you have a loved one who is incarcerated or could potentially be detained in the future, you may be wondering what your options are for helping them get out. When in such a predicament, you can post various types of bonds.
Choosing the best one for your scenario can be a difficult and intimidating task. However, understanding the various types of bonds can help steer you in the right direction. This guide will explain the different types of bonds available and help you understand their distinctions before deciding which one is right for your situation.
Types of Bonds
Bonds are essentially an agreement between two parties in which one party agrees to pay a certain amount of money if the other party fails to meet a specific obligation. Depending on the charge and the defendant's criminal history, the court may order a particular type of bond.
In the United States, several types of bonds are permitted under the law. Understanding the various types and when they apply is critical to making the best selection for your scenario. Here is a brief overview of some of the most common bonds:
A surety bond is when a bail bondsman posts bail on your behalf. This type of bond is usually used for more serious offenses, as it involves three parties - the defendant, the surety company, and the court. The surety company guarantees that the defendant will appear in court, and if they don't, they will be responsible for paying the bail amount.
This type of bond typically requires collateral, such as property or cash, if you fail to appear for your court date. If you do not show up for court, the bail bondsman can use the collateral to cover the cost of your bond. The bail bondsman will charge a service fee (typically 10-15% of the total bond amount).
Property bonds are another option for posting bail. With this type of bond, you can use property (such as a home or piece of land) as collateral. If you fail to appear for your court date, the property can be seized and sold to cover the cost of your bond.
A citation release is a bond available for minor offenses, such as traffic violations or misdemeanors. This type of bond does not require any collateral and requires you to promise to appear in court. Failure to do so may result in arrest or losing your driver's license.
A recognizance release is also known as a ROR. With this type of bond, you do not need to post any collateral, but you must agree to certain conditions, such as appearing in court when scheduled and not committing more crimes. This type of bond is generally used for low-level offenses or first-time offenders.
This is the most common type of bond and is simply the amount used to pay bail. Cash bail is when you pay the bail amount in full and are released from custody. This option is not available in all cases and can be pretty expensive.
Federal Bail Bonds
If you face federal charges, you will need to post a federal bail bond. This type of bond is typically more expensive than other bonds and requires collateral.
Immigration Bail Bonds
If you face immigration charges, you will need to post an immigration bail bond. This type of bond is typically more expensive than other bonds and requires collateral.