Bail bondsmen have gained a bad reputation in some quarters over the years. The image presented of gun-toting bounty hunters on reality TV is hardly family friendly. A lot of it, though, comes down to a fundamental miusunderstanding of what we do.
We’re not not here to target any specific groups, or to punish the poor. We don’t decide bail amounts for any person or any crime – that’s up to the courts. What we do is provide a unique public service; we are a valuable advocate when people need one the most. And, in the overwhelming majority of cases, the service we provide is helpful to the communities in which we serve.
How Bail Bonds Help
When defendants are released on their own recognizance (i.e. without a money bond), they don’t have a real incentive to make it back to court – ESPECIALLY if they are guilty.
When a bond is involved, though, it’s different. Almost all defendants have a loved one or family member cosign for their bond. When deciding whether or not to show up to court, a defendant knows that their loved ones collateral hangs in the balance. This is usually a large sum of money, or a valuable asset such as a house or a car. They are MUCH more likely to show for all of the proceedings.
After all, most people are happy to break a promise to a faceless system. But they are not nearly so ready to forget their obligations if it’s their parents, or their grandparents, that they will be answering to. Most of the time it is not necessary at all to pursue a defendant as long as we have a solid indemnitor (Dad,mom,employer etc.) signing on the bond. I cannot begin to tell you of the upset and disappointed grandmothers who have dragged an individual back into my office by the ear, to make sure they don’t lose the home they worked so hard for.
What We Do To Help
Bondsmen have a valuable role in this too, of course. Here at Integrity we keep our clients in line by having them check-in with us, daily if necessary. We also call them to notify them of all of their court dates and any other obligations to the court, and if necessary we will help them get there too. We try to form a rapport with our clients: we prejudge nobody, we’re mindful of any unique circumstances and requirements and we try to find out what makes them ‘tick’. Hopefully, if their confidence is wavering and they are thinking of skipping out on their obligations, we can persuade them otherwise.
Ultimately, to help is what we want to do. Whether people see it that way, and whether they accept our help, is not always in our control, but we do everything we can to make it so.
We’ll leave you with one final point of interest: the cost to house, secure, feed and provide medical care to an inmate awaiting trial? $127, per person, per day. That’s a cost that is saved to taxpaying communities every time a defendant posts a bond with a bail agent to get out of jail.
Stay safe, obey the law, and keep Integrity Bail Bonds’ contact details with you, just in case. REMEMBER: “It’s better to know us and not need us than to need us and not know us”.