If the police arrest you on a criminal charge, you may be eligible for bail, depending on the nature of the offense. You can pay the bail amount to the court, or if you do not have the ready cash, you can approach a bail bond company for a bail bond to serve as surety. However, for a bail bond company to process your request, it will typically ask for collateral to secure the bond in addition to its commission.
The Need for Bail Bond Collateral
In case the defendant violates the bail terms, the bail bond company must pay the court the bail amount. Since the bail bond company stands to lose a substantial amount, it asks the defendant to offer approved collateral it can sell to recover its investment.
Typical Attributes of Acceptable Collateral for Bail Bonds
Must be adequately valuable: Bail bond companies will ask customers for collateral with a value equal to or greater than the amount of the bail set by the court. According to Investopedia, they will also charge a commission, usually 10% of the bail amount. With collateral of this amount, the bail bond company will be more confident that the defendant will not flee, and in case of need, they can sell the assets to recover their investment. Typically, preferred types of bail bond collateral include real estate, vehicles, jewelry, and other valuables with tangible and steady value. In the case of a credit card, the available limit must be greater than the bond amount.
Must be transferable: The collateral must belong to the defendant or another person offering it on his behalf and be a transferable asset. Bail bond companies prefer property, jewelry, cars, etc. Collateral in the form of shares and investments, collectibles, antiques, etc., are difficult to value and have a limited resale market.
Easily liquidated: Typically, a bail bond company like Connecticut Bail Bonds Group near Hartford will insist on collateral assets that they can sell for cash easily and quickly in case of default by the defendant. Follow the map;
If the asset does not have a ready market, the bail company may refuse to accept it because it might take a long time to sell it and realize its proper value. All bail bond companies prefer assets they can quickly sell due to a ready market and strong demand, like cars, jewelry, and property.
Free of lien: Bail bond companies will only accept collateral if it belongs to the person offering it and does not have encumbrances like liens or pledges. The bond company will not accept a house with an existing mortgage because the title to the property is not free. Any other asset, already pledged, is not eligible for collateral for a bail bond.
Obtaining a bail bond is not a difficult process. You need to be able to afford the commission charged by the bond company and offer real, tangible, and valuable collateral free from any pledges, liens, and mortgages. You must understand if you violate the bail terms, the bond company can move to liquidate these assets without any notice.