People who are released from custody after purchasing bail bonds in Berkeley are not free and clear of legal troubles. This person will still need to appear in court at a set date and time in order to have the matter resolved. If you have been asked to cosign the defendant’s bail bonds agreement form you are taking responsibility this person will make good on that promise.
Failing to appear is a very serious offense. The judge will revoke the defendant’s bond on the spot and they will also issue a bench warrant for their immediate arrest. They can now be arrested on any day, at any time, for any reason. Warrants never expire and they span across all 50 states.
If the defendant missed court because they slept in, forgot, or got lost on their way to the court house, this can be easily fixed. They will simply want to call their bondsman right away and ask for a reassumption of liability. This is a piece of paper that will need to be posted with the court. it will allow for the bond to be reinstated and for the case to be put back on the calender.
On the other hand, if they made a conscious decision to flee, this is where things become complicated. The bondsman and the person who cosigned the paperwork will have 180 days to get the defendant back into the system. If they fail, the cosigner will be on the hook to pay the full bail amount to the court as a penalty. Persons who are captured prior to this time will be rearrested and re-booked into the Santa Rita Jail.
FTA bail amounts are often set much higher than the amount for the initial arrest. At this point the jail considers the defendant to be a much greater flight risk because they now have a history of willfully evading justice. You can think of the reasoning behind this as being similar to why your auto insurance premium is set at a particular rate. Persons who have a clean driving record will have a lower rate. If that same person gets into a few accidents and racks up a few tickets, their premium will skyrocket.
If the bondsman in Berkely did not require collateral for the first bond, they are almost guaranteed to require it for the second. They may also ask for several cosigners who have good credit or who own homes. In other instances they may decline to help the defendant get out of jail.
If you know someone who has been arrested by a member of the Berkeley Police Department and have questions about how bail works, be sure to contact a trustworthy bondsman in your area.