Bail Bond Guide

Los Angeles Bail Bonds Guide (FAQ)

What is bail?

Bail is a specific amount of money posted to the court to obtain the release of a defendant. The amount is determined either by the judge according to the person's crime and level of flight risk or by a bail bond schedule that has been developed by legal professionals in that particular area.

How does a bail bond work?

A bail bond is a contract that guarantees that the court will receive the full amount of a defendant's bail if they do not appear for court. A bail bond stipulates that a surety company will be responsible for the entire bail amount if a co-signer secures the contract with 10 percent of the total bond amount in addition to the bond premium. For example, if the total bond amount is $25,000, the co-signer must have $2,500 plus the premium to secure the bail bond agreement.

What is a bail bond?

A bail bond is the actual contract between the co-signor, the court and the bail bond agent that puts in place the financial guarantee that the court will receive the entire bond amount if the defendant fails to fulfill their requirements to the court. The requirements can include drug/alcohol classes, public services, payment of fees and court costs and anything else the judge feels is relevant to the continuation of the case.

What is the difference between the premium and the amount of the bail bond?

The premium is the amount charged to cover the cost of offering the option of pre-trial release. Normally this is 10 percent of the total amount of the bail bond (Bail bond = $10,000, Premium = $1,000). The bail bond is the amount of money deemed necessary by the court to guarantee the appearance of the defendant at their hearing.

Who is a guarantor/co-signer?

A guarantor or co-signer is anyone who agrees to be responsible for the financial obligations and actions of the defendant once they have been freed on bond. This includes both their appearance in court and the assumption of the responsibility for the full amount of the bail bond. A co-signer can be a parent, friend, spouse or a total stranger.

When is a bail bond exonerated?

A bond is said to be exonerated once the entire court case has been finished or completed. A determination of guilt or innocence does not influence the release of the bail funds. Once the case is closed, the funds are released minus any monies used to cover court costs or fees.

When is a bond forfeited?

A bond is forfeited when the defendant refuses or fails to meet the requirements put in place by the court. If the defendant does not appear for their appointed hearing, a bench warrant will be issued and they will be arrested and taken into custody. If a defendant is working with Bail Bonds DIRECT and is making an attempt to work with the court, their bail bond may be “reinstated”. Once this occurs, a new court date will be set.

What is a summary judgment?

When a summary judgment has been issued, the entire amount of the bail bond is due and payable to the court. This type of judgment is issued when the deadline for a reinstatement has passed. It means that the defendant has missed a court date and has not made any attempt to work with the court or make contact with their bail bond agent. The defendant will be re-arrested, forfeiting their entire bail and will not be eligible for a new bail bond.

What is a reinstatement?

When a bond is reinstated, it means that the defendant has missed a court date, but is taking the necessary steps to correct the misunderstanding. Reinstating a bond means that the bench warrant issued for the defendant will be rescinded and the defendant has agreed to appear in court at a future date. The Bail Bonds DIRECT agent and defendant will work with the court to make sure the case remains in good standing. The court understands that, in some case, circumstances that are beyond the defendant's control can cause them to miss a court date. If the defendant makes every attempt to correct the problem and remains in contact with the court, the court will take the issue into consideration and provide the defendant with a deadline that must be complied with to prevent the forfeiture of their bail.

What factors does the court consider when fixing a bail amount?

The amount of a bail bond is completely at the discretion of the judge and normally only has two limitations. Bail bonds are not designed to be a punishment. Instead, they are simply a guarantee that the defendant will return to court when their trial date is near. Excessive bail amounts are a violation of a person's constitutional rights and are not tolerated. When determining a defendant's bail amount, the defendant's prior criminal history as well as the severity of the charge are the two main influences.

Public safety is also an issue that must be considered by the court. If the defendant is a threat to themselves or to others in the public, the court may choose to refuse to set a bail amount. This is normally the case if threats of violence have been made or the defendant has an extensive record involving the use of weapons or force.

How much does a bail bond cost?

The cost to bail someone out of jail differs from case to case and location to location. If you have any questions, call one of our licensed agents today to have all of your questions answered. You can call our Bail Bonds DIRECT office at 213-550-1142 anytime to speak to one of our highly trained staff members.

Are premiums refundable?

Premiums are not refundable and are earned as soon as the defendant is released from jail. Co-signers and defendants are responsible for the premium as well as any fees owed to the bail bonds agency.


Phone Payments

Phone payments may be made to one of our qualified agents at Bail Bonds DIRECT. Call our office today at 213-550-1142 to set up carefully planned payment arrangements that are affordable and will work within your budget. Credit cards, bank accounts and other forms of collateral are accepted. When using a credit or debit card, please make sure to have all account and pin numbers ready when speaking to an agent.

In Person Payments

Payments can be made in person at any one of our local offices. Personal checks, major credit cards, cash and money orders are readily accepted.

Mail Payments

You can also make a payment by sending a check or money order to our local office. The address is as follows:

Bail Bonds Direct

931 Vignes Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Please do not send cash through the mail.

All payments will be processed as efficiently as possible. Most are completed within 5 business days after they have been received.

This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice or the information of an attorney client relationship. Bail Bonds Direct makes no warranties or guarantees of case outcomes.


/ keep in touch

Bail Bonds

931 North Vignes St,

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone. 213-465-4030

Fax. 213-465-4030