If someone calls and asks you help bail them out of jail you should know that you’ll be taking on certain responsibilities once you sign the bail bonds contract. Your first instinct may be to do whatever you can to help them get out of jail fast. At the same time you will still want to do your best to remain calm. In order to bail someone out of jail you will need to sign a legally binding contract and you will want to read it carefully before you place your signature on the dotted line.
First and foremost you will be taking responsibility that the defendant will attend all of their necessary court dates in order to have their case resolved.
If someone misses court because of an unforeseen circumstance or because they forgot this can be quickly resolved by placing a simple phone call to their bondsman.
On the other hand, if the defendant decides to skip bail and flee to a different state or country you may be responsible for additional fees should the bail bonds company need to hire a fugitive recovery agent to locate them. In very rare cases, if the defendant cannot be located and returned to custody within a six month time period, you may be held responsible to pay their full bail amount to the court.
The good news is the percentage of people who have been bailed out jail and decide to flee from justice is very low. Approximately 98% of people in the U.S. go to court when they are supposed to.
If someone is asking for your assistance in arranging bail and you do not know them very well or if you have concerns about them willfully evading court, you should think twice before agreeing to help.