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Q: What is Bail?
A: The dictionary defines Bail as “The temporary release of an accused person awaiting trial, sometimes on condition that a sum of money be lodged to guarantee their appearance in court.”
Basically bail is a monetary guarantee to the court that the accused will appear at the appointed time in court.
So, How do bail bonds work?
Typically a friend, relative, attorney, or defendant will communicate with Strike 3 Bail Bonds over the phone, or by stopping by our office which is located next to the Bell County Jail at 1902 S. Loop 121 Belton Texas 76513, at which time a professional Bond Agent will perform a consultation. During this consultation, the agent will be looking for some basic information in regards to the situation, i.e. where the accused is held, what their charges are, some information about the accused workplace, place of residence and so on. Strike 3’s Bond Agent must assess the risk that may be involved in posting the bond.
Once our agent has determined that the situation is acceptable to post the bond for the accused, some paperwork will be processed and the bond agent will post the bail at the facility where the accused is being held. Depending on the jail facility the accused is being held in, the accused can be released within the hour, and unfortunately sometimes it will take many many hours for the jail staff to process the accused out of the jail.
Q: What is the process of bail?
A: The purpose of the bail system is to guarantee the appearance of a criminal defendant in court, and it is important that you know how the bail bond process works.
When a person is charged with a crime and put in jail the Judge or magistrate, in most cases, will set a bail amount. The defendant will either stay in jail until the disposition of his case or the defendant could bond out. At this time the defendant will either put up the entire bond amount in the form of cash or money order, to contact a Surety (Bail Bond Agent) to post the bond for them. This will release the defendant so he may continue with his daily life while awaiting his court date, and the courts will have security that the defendant will appear and complete his case.
Q: Can I post the full bond fee myself?
A: Yes. A friend or family member can post the full cash bond amount with the court. This money will be held by the courts until the disposition of the case. The case could last months or even years. There will be several court dates the defendant will need to attend. In the event the defendant misses even one court date, the bond amount will be kept by the courts, and a warrant will be issue for the defendant. The bond amount will double and it will be very hard to find a bond company that will trust the defendant to go to court. It is a risk to post the full bail amount. Strike 3 Bail Bond agents are at the court house in most cases 2 times each day. We check the court dockets each day for changes and resets. Our agents notify the defendant and cosigners of these changes. Strike 3 Bail Bond Agents are professionals. Don’t risk your freedom and hard earned money by doing this alone.
Q: How much does it cost to bond someone out of jail?
A: The bond fee can vary depending on the charge, the county the charge is from and the bond amount and the level of risk to the posting agent. A Strike 3 Bond agent looks at each case individually and will quote the best price according to the current circumstances. Each bond is dealt with on a case by case basis. Strike 3 Bail Bonds take in consideration many factors before quoting a fee. Contact Strike 3 Bail Bonds and speak directly to a Bond Agent to get a firm price.
Q: Can I make payment plan if I don’t have the total fee?
A: Yes. Under the right circumstances Strike 3 Bail Bond will enter into a payment agreement with the defendant and/or cosigner. The cosigner will be liable for all payments and will need to provide a credit card to Strike 3 Bail Bonds for the payments as agreed upon.
Q: What is the process of payment?
A: Strike 3 Bail Bonds accepts Cash, Visa, Discover & MasterCard, Money Order, Western Union, Money Gram. We do not accept American Express.
Q: What responsibilities does a cosigner have?
A: The responsibilities of the cosigner are simple. MAKING SURE THE DEFENDANT ATTENDS ALL COURT APPEARANCES. Providing the defendant transportation if needed. Notifying Strike 3 Bail Bonds of any and all changes of employment address and phone numbers. Notifying Strike 3 Bail Bond with future court appearances and making sure the premium is paid.
Q: What is needed to be a cosigner on someone’s bond?
A: The cosigner must be employed for a minimum of 6 months. The cosigner must not currently be on bond, probation or parole. The cosigner must be able to provide Valid ID, Utility Bill, and Pay check Stub. The cosigner must be 18 or older and a U.S. citizen. The cosigner may not be a spouse or significant other to the defendant. Under certain circumstances Strike 3 Bail Bond will accept a spouse or significant other to be a secondary cosigner.
Q: What happens if I don’t want to cosign anymore?
A: In the event you no longer feel comfortable being a cosigner on a bond it is important to contact us and explain your concerns. In some cases we may ask the defendant to bring in another cosigner to replace you. You will remain liable for the bond amount until we have notified you of a substituted cosigner, the disposition of the case, or if the defendant is incarcerated and Strike 3 Bail Bonds has been able to submit proper documentation to the courts that is accepted and signed by the judge. Any balances due will need to be paid in full before we relieve a cosigner of the liabilities.
Q: How can I bond someone out if I live out of the area?
A: After speaking to and coming to an agreement with a Strike 3 Bond Agent, you can print and fill out the necessary forms and return those back to us by scanning and emailing, or faxing to 254-933-7773. Payments can be made via credit card on this website. Just go to the “Make a Payment” tab and follow the prompts.
Q: How long does it take to do the paperwork when bonding someone out of jail?
A: The cosigner will come into the office or meet an agent at the jail. This paperwork takes approximately 20 minutes. The bond will be turned into the jail. The defendant will be required to come into our office to fill out post bond paperwork. This paperwork also takes about 20 to 30 minutes.
Q: How much time does it take to get a person out of jail?
A: This varies from jail to jail and depends on the county the defendant was arrested in. Example: A defendant is arrested, and is being held at Killeen Police Department. That person under normal circumstances is usually be released in about 20 minute of when the bond is accepted. But in the County jail it usually takes between 2 and 4 hours. It all depends on what is going on behind those closed doors.
Q: What responsibilities does a defendant have?
A: After release, the defendant must report to Strike 3 Bail Bond to complete paperwork. This should happen on the next business day. The defendant will enter into a legal agreement to pay any balances due and to update our office of any and all changes such as phone numbers, addresses, employment status. And, of course ATTEND ALL COURT APPEARANCES. The defendant will be required to notify us if he has hired or obtained an attorney. Strike 3 Bail Bond will work hand in hand with the attorney to ensure this case is handled in the most discreet and professional manner.
Q: Can you service areas outside the vicinity of your office location?
A: We can assist in all bail matters. Contact a Strike 3 Bail Bond Agent for specific information.
Q: Does my money get returned after the defendant goes to court?
A: In most cases there is not money returned. The fees Strike 3 Bail Bonds collect is payment for managing the defendants case from start to finish. Working with the defendant and their attorney to be sure the defendant is notified of court dates, and any changes that may arise. In some cases Strike 3 Bail Bonds will require collateral in addition to the bond fee. Collateral is normally in the form of cash, but could possibly be something of value that Strike 3 Bail Bonds will hold until the disposition of the case. The collateral will be returned to the person for whom we have received it only AFTER the case is final.
Q: How can a warrant be taken care of with a Bail Bond?
A: When a person has a warrant for their arrest it is in their best interest to take action as soon as possible. In most cases Strike 3 Bail Bond can get details of the warrant, what the warrant is for and determine if there is a pre-set bond amount. With this information we can make an appointment with the defendant and take care of all paperwork prior to turning himself into the jail. Often we can turn a bond in with the defendant to speed the time the defendant will be inside the jail. This is called a walk through. A walk through lets the defendants take charge of the situation and take care of the warrant on his own time with no surprises to his neighbors or coworkers.
Q: What is gained from bailing someone out of jail?
A: The benefits to be considered is the defendant being able to continue work, school, family, home and other aspects of daily life. It also permits the unhampered preparation of a defense. In some cases a defendant may consider setting out the charges. Keep in mind that in most cases it could be weeks before they would be able to talk to a prosecutor about their case while incarcerated.