Most people don’t plan for a future arrest, let alone think about what bail bonds company they’ll call if it ever happens. Unfortunately, it happens. Whether you are guilty or not of actually committing the crime you were arrested for doesn’t matter at this moment. What does matter is getting out of jail as quickly as possible with the help of a bail bondsman? Before you hire the first agency you come across, knowing what to look for may help you avoid scams or additional expenses.
How Do I Choose a Bail Bond Agency?
First, the most crucial detail to not overlook is to find if the bail bond company is licensed. Find an agent with a good track record and a solid reputation in the business, even if it costs a little more. Skip the brand new companies or any sales pitch that sounds too good to be true. It’s worth spending some extra time finding someone who can walk you through the process and is trustworthy.
Find an Experienced Surety Bail Bond Agent
Choosing a seasoned bail bond agent is always a good move to ensure the smoothest process. He or she is knowledgeable about how everything works, including the jail and the court system. They will also be current on any new law changes or updates to the requirements at the jail.
Upfront About Fees & Bail Expenses
Some unscrupulous bond agencies play on your fear and stress of the situation to get you to buy into their scam or spend more than you should have to. Trustworthy bail bond companies do not offer deals or discounts for their services. A reliable bail agent will clearly explain the cost of his or her services upfront. If you can’t get a price nailed down or you feel like you’re being pressured into handing over money without knowing what you are paying for, walk away.
Choose a 24-Hour Bond Company
Arrests don’t just happen during banking hours, so it’s important to find an agency that is open all hours. Bonds people should be available 24/7, including weekends and holidays. Choosing a 24/7 bail bond agency means not having to spend the night or the weekend in jail waiting for the office to open. You or your loved one will get released sooner with a company available around the clock.
Choose a Local Bail Agent Over Corporate
There are nationwide chain bail bonds companies out there for hire, but odds are, they are just a third-party website referral service. Look for an agency with a physical address and phone number because that gives the company credibility. A local bond company can process your release faster because they are already familiar with the area’s judicial system.
Bondsman Online Reviews
Just like any other business you may use, a bail bondsman firm will most likely have reviews on Google or even Yelp. Read through them to get an idea about how people feel about their services. If you can get a personal referral, that is often better than any online review.
Professional Customer Service
Reading through reviews should give you an excellent visual of how the agency or agent treats customers. Regardless of your ability to pay, social status, race or past crimes, everyone who passes through the bail bonds company deserves to be treated politely and respectfully. Being arrested is already challenging for some people; being treated poorly will only add more stress and frustration.
Get Friendly with the Detention Officers
If you feel comfortable chatting up a duty officer, go ahead. They know the names of the local bail bonds companies and they have inside knowledge on who is reliable. If you’re nice (and they like you!), they may just give you a good referral.
Make an Informed Decision About Which Bail Bonds Agency to Hire
Not all agencies are equal. You may find that even though all of the bond dealers offer the same service, they may not provide the same quality of service. Rates may vary between companies and some are just looking to snap up a new client to make some quick money. Choosing a bail bonds firm like Frank Chavez Bail Bonds in South Florida means your agent will take the time to understand your specific situation and discuss all possible options before accepting payment.