Cosigners play a vital role in the bail bond process, as they are responsible for ensuring the defendant appears in court and fulfills their obligations. However, what happens if they fail to pay the bond? Here’s a look at what can occur when a cosigner is unable to pay the bail amount, as well as the consequences they might face as a result.
How Do Bail Bonds Work?
Before we delve into what happens when a cosigner doesn’t pay bond, let’s briefly review the bail process. When someone is arrested, a judge sets a bail amount based on factors such as the severity of the crime and the defendant’s criminal history. To obtain a bail bond, the defendant or their representative contacts a licensed bail bondsman who agrees to post the bail amount on their behalf. In exchange for this service, the bail bonds agency they visit charges a non-refundable fee.
The defendant must also provide collateral, such as property or a cosigner, to ensure they will appear in court as required. If the defendant fails to appear on the designated court date, the bail bondsman has the right to locate and apprehend them — potentially utilizing the services of a professional bounty hunter.
If a Cosigner Doesn’t Pay Bail Money, What Happens?
When a cosigner fails to pay the bond or the defendant does not attend their court dates, they can experience serious consequences. For example, the bail bond agency may demand immediate payment of the outstanding amount, and the cosigner’s credit score could be negatively impacted due to the unpaid debt. The collateral provided by the cosigner – which can include property, vehicles, or other valuable assets – might be seized and liquidated to recover the bail amount.
In addition, the cosigner may face legal repercussions, such as being sued by the bail bond company for breach of contract. In extreme cases where the defendant cannot be located, the cosigner may also be held responsible for additional expenses incurred during the recovery process, including fees for bounty hunters and investigators.
Can a Cosigner Go to Jail?
While it is unlikely that a cosigner would face jail time solely for their inability to pay the bail money, they may still encounter various consequences. In some cases, the bail bond agency may pursue legal action against the cosigner, which could lead to a civil lawsuit for breach of contract and the potential for wage garnishment or asset seizure. It is essential for cosigners to understand the risks involved in guaranteeing a bail bond and to ensure they have the means to fulfill their obligations should any issues arise.
Contact Our Bail Bondsmen Agency Today
When you need assistance navigating the complexities of bail bonds, we’ll be there to help. At Freedom Fast Bail Bonds, we help clients obtain bail bonds for misdemeanors and felonies, drug charges, and other criminal charges. If you’d like to learn more about the bail bonds and to start speaking with our bail bondsmen, contact us today.