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Bail Bonds Basics

Do you find yourself needing to understand more about the bail bonds system in order to better help yourself or a loved one? Understanding how bail bonds work and how the amount is determined can help you in the decision making process. Keep reading to learn more about the basics of bail bonds in order to make the right choice for your specific bail bond needs.

*Note: If you’d first like to know more about what bail bonds are, you can find that information on our blog here.

Coins next to a gavel and bail bond sign.
Coins next to a gavel and bail bond sign.

How do Bail Bonds Work?

Before the actual trial date, an individual who has been charged with a crime will be given a bail hearing with a judge. This is the time where the bail amount is set or denied altogether. Once bail has been set, the defendant is given the options of either staying in jail until the end of the trial, arranging a bail bond, or paying the bail amount in full. A bail bondsman gives a written agreement to the courts to pay the bail in full in the event of the defendant not showing on their court date. Generally, the bondsman will charge 10% of the bail amount up front and will accept most property of value as collateral.

How is the Amount Determined?

During the bail hearing, the amount is determined by the judge presiding over the hearing. The primary factors which contribute to how much an individual will have to pay are the severity of the crime as well as the person’s criminal history. There are also secondary factors to determine the amount which includes the defendants’ personal background and any ties to their community. 

Concept of money next to a gavel.
Concept of money next to a gavel.

What are the Disadvantages?

There are some disadvantages to the bail bonds system in that many, including those in the legal profession, find it to be discriminatory against lower-income individuals. Because these defendants are given the ultimatum of either staying in jail or finding some way to get a 10% cash fee for the bondsman, many are arguing for the bail bonds system to be eliminated entirely.

Conclusions Whether you’re looking to better understand how bail bonds work or you’ve been wondering what the major factors in determining bail are, you should work with a bail bondsman you can trust. At Troy’s Bail Bonds our team will work diligently to provide you with a bail bond you can afford, as well as excellent customer service to help answer any and all of your questions during this stressful time.

Picking a Local Bail Bondsman

When you reach out for a service, it’s only natural to perform your due diligence and research in order to ensure you’re indeed working with a professional. This holds no less true when beginning the hunt for a bail bondsman. In fact, with so much more at stake, even more research is necessary to really guarantee you’ve found a bondsman you can rely on to preserve your freedom.

Of course, many don’t exactly have a deep well of knowledge and past experience to draw from when dealing with arrests and posting bail. So where is one to even begin when looking for a bail bondsman they can trust? What sort of qualities should one look for? Is the process really as simple as looking online for any other service like repairs or plumbing? Fortunately for those being berated by a relentless flood of questions such as these, we’re geared up and ready to go with a few tried and true steps you can follow sure to lead you down the path to finding a trustworthy bondsman.

Determine the Bail Amount

It should be no surprise that determining the bail amount is the first paramount step in narrowing down your search for the perfect bail bonds agent. Fortunately, you’ll learn your bail amount at the jail. As far as what you can expect, we actually mentioned in a previous post many of the factors that actually go into determining bail amounts! Knowing what to expect based on factors like the severity of your crime, your age, and past criminal history can give you more time to find a bondsman who can front the bill.

Know Your Bondsman’s Fee

Naturally, you wouldn’t go in on any service if you didn’t know how much you were expected to pay. The same goes for bail bonds. One of the first things you should consider before settling on a bail bondsman is the fee they plan on charging once everything is said and done. Laws that determine the fees an agent can charge vary from state to state so perform a few Google searches and be sure to call up and directly ask the bonds team you’ll consider working with.

Ask Around

Now that you know what you’re looking for and how much you’re expected to pay, referrals are going to be your front line defense against untrustworthy bondsmen. Fortunately, there are a wealth of people you can ask for their personal and professional recommendations. Starting with your friends and family, see if you can receive some advice from those who’ve experienced reaching out for bail bonds before.

Asking your lawyer and your detention officer is also a wonderful idea. These professionals have years and years of experience working closely with a number of local bail bond agents and have more of an understanding of which are worth their salt.


The last thing you want to do when it comes to your freedom and rights is jeopardize yourself by settling for the first agent you find online. Keep these tips in mind and work with a professional who can quell your concerns and secure your freedom.

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