How Bail Works

How Bail Works in Los Angeles

Bail is a financial security that is posted for an accused to ensure that he/she will make each and every future court appearance to answer the accusation(s) that are brought against them. Bail is typically posted in the form of a bail bond (Surety Bond) but can also be posted in cash.

When a person is arrested and charged with committing a crime, a bail amount is set by the jail in accordance to a bail schedule which is determined by the county judicial system. The full bail amount must be paid to secure the release of the defendant. The inmate or someone on their behalf can post the entire bail amount themselves via cash or a cashier’s check directly to the jail or court house or they can hire a bail agency to post the entire bail amount for them. The California Department of Insurance mandates bail agencies to charge a 10% fee, which is non-refundable and is fully earned upon the release of the defendant. A bail bond is an insurance policy guaranteeing that the defendant will appear in court on all scheduled court dates.

The court will hold the bail money until the case is completed. A criminal case is considered complete when a sentence is given, a case is dismissed or a plea bargain is reached between the defendant and the state. If a surrender date is given to the defendant, the bond will stand until the person goes back into custody. After the defendant has completed their case and/or they have surrendered themselves back into custody, the bond is exonerated and in the case of cash bail, the funds are returned. Keep in mind that the premium paid to the bail agency does not get refunded. If the defendant misses a court date the bail is then considered forfeited and the court begins the process of cashing the bond. A California Bail Bond Agency has a predetermined amount of time to bring a defendant/fugitive back to court to avoid paying the entire bail amount. If the bail agency fails to bring the defendant back to court/ custody within the predetermined time, the bail agency must pay the full bail amount to the courts. It’s the agency’s responsibility to recover the entire bail amount from the Indemnitor(s) by receiving payment(s) or by liquidating any held collateral.

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.


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Bail Bonds

931 North Vignes St,

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone. 213-465-4030

Fax. 213-465-4030