Once you have been arrested and charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, you become a defendant in a lawsuit that could result in staying in jail while making several court appearances. Your freedom is essential for the success of your case. That's why the law allows you to post bail for your release from jail and attend your court hearings as required.
If you don’t have money to post the determined bail amount in California, you need to work with a reliable bail bonds agent. At 24 Hour Online Bail Bonds, we post bail on your loved one’s behalf for them to walk out of jail and prepare for the court proceedings. Contact us today and let us offer you unmatched bail bond services.
Definition of Bail
Bail refers to the money that a defendant posts in court to be released from jail. Posting bail works as a means to ensure that you will attend future court appearances. Judges do not automatically decide on your plea to post bail. They can sometimes deny you this opportunity, depending on the type of crime that you've committed. However, judges usually agree to the decision to post bail most of the time.
The amount of bail that you have to pay varies depending on the crimes involved. All California counties, including San Diego, have their bail schedules that set the bail standard for each crime. Every case is different when a judge is determining bail. However, below are seven factors that the judge must consider when assessing the bail:
- The amount that has been posted in the bail schedule. In this case, the judge will set bail according to the San Diego County bail schedule.
- The seriousness of the alleged crime. Generally, serious crime attracts a serious bail setting.
- Past Criminal Record or Outstanding Warrants. A defendant with a substantial criminal record can receive a higher bail amount. The judge may additionally deny bail altogether to defendants with outstanding warrants in another jurisdiction.
- The defendant's tie to the community. Defendants who are well invested in the community are less likely to be a flight risk, commit more crimes, or endanger others. Therefore, having stronger ties to the community or relatives can favor a more lenient bail requirement.
- Probability to make court appearances. Defendants with a history of missing court hearings will most likely receive a higher bail set.
- The defendant's public risk. The court usually decides on the bail set depending on the defendant’s risk, on the public.
- Potential flight risk. Defendants with a likelihood to flee the jurisdiction before a case concludes or were apprehended while on the run from law enforcement will most likely receive a higher bail set.
How Bail Work in San Diego County
The process of obtaining a bail bond takes an average of thirty minutes. Most bail bond agencies offer 24 hours services, make it easy to secure their services anytime you’re arrested. Others offer bail online or by phone, which is also an accessible means to provide relevant services. Once you have processed the bail, it only takes about four hours to be released from custody.
A bail agent will post bail in exchange for a premium. In San Diego County, the law has set a maximum of 10% as the non-refundable premium. This means, if you should pay a total bail of $50,000, you will have to pay the bail agent a total of $5,000 as the premium. Your sentencing judge should refer to the bail information related to San Diego to determine how much you should pay as your bail bond.
However, some bail bondsmen can offer discounts to the following clients:
- Clients with legal representation.
- Government employees.
- Union members.
- Anyone with a family member to cosign for the bond.
- Members of the U.S military.
Our San Diego County bail bond agents offer easy payment plans that you can choose from. Once you have paid the bail agent fee, you can choose from our competitive payment plans like installment payment and use of your co-signer credit.
The court is bound to return the bail amount to the bondsman if you comply with all regulations they have set forth regarding your charges. In most cases, the court expects defendants to appear on all court dates during the trial.
Most bail agencies are close to the local jails, police stations, and courts. Therefore, you’ll not have to worry about the possibilities of delay or additional costs that come with agencies that aren’t close enough.
Qualification for Bail Bonds
Every bail bonds agent has a different set of rules to qualify for their services. It's crucial to learn about these requirements to be better positioned to achieve what you expect. Below are the qualification requirements you should meet:
- Must be a California resident.
- Should have the ability to make the down payment of the required premium.
- Must have a reliable consigner.
- Should be able to comply with the payment plans that the bail agent has established.
Types of Collateral Used in Posting Bail Bonds in San Diego County
Our San Diego County bail bonds agent accepts any collateral as long as it is of value to be used as an alternative to paying cash. We usually ask for collateral as a security to the amount we spend on your behalf to bail you out of jail or police custody. Below are some of the collaterals that you can use as collateral.
Vehicles are usually a ready source of collateral while posting bail bonds. Vehicles like ATV, RV, trucks, cars, and snowmobiles would be suitable to secure your freedom. You can retain the vehicle as long as you make all court-mandated appearances. However, if you default on your obligation and have the bond canceled, your vehicle will be forfeited to the court.
Bonds, Stocks, and Other Securities
Sometimes defendants can tie your bail bonds to investments like stocks, bonds, and other types of securities. Again if you fail to honor your court appearances, you can lead to a revocation of your bond and loss of your collateral.
Different forms of real estate like home, business, or land can be used as collateral to post bonds. If you own a home, but it's on a mortgage, you can still secure a bond with the equity that you hold on it. For instance, if you own a house worth $200,000 and have $100,000 equity on it, you can use this amount as collateral against the bond.
Precious metals, jewelry, and other family heirlooms can be suitable collateral to obtain cash that will be used as your bail bond. Our San Diego County bail bonds agent will work with you to assess and determine your jewelry or metal market value to confirm whether its value is sufficient to pay for your release.
Collectible and Pawnable Items
Valuables like collectibles or pawnable items owned by a defendant can also be suitable collaterals. For instance, if you own several musical instruments, audio equipment, gaming, and entertainment technology, your bail agent might consider accepting them as your collateral. Bail agents can also take antiques, especially those with high appraisal, to verify the market value of the items.
Things You Need to Know About Cosigners
A third party must play as a cosigner to every bail application in standard practice for bond agents. The term "third party" means that this is another person involved in the bail bond posting process other than the bail agent and the person applying for the agent.
A cosigner is a person that enters into a contractual agreement, referred to as an Indemnity Agreement, obligating them for the total amount of the bail if the defendant fails to appear in court and the bond is forfeited.
Responsibilities of a Cosigner
If you post bail for someone, your decision comes with several responsibilities. To get you or your loved one released from jail, you must sign a legal contract between yourself, the court, the defendant, and the bail bonds agent with whom you will be posting your bond.
After the defendant's release, third parties become responsible for ensuring that the following are completed:
1. Payment of Your Bond Premium
It's the consigner's responsibility to ensure that the bond premium paid to the bond agent is paid. As a consigner, you must pay the premium in cash or use the bail agent's payment plan before the bond is posted.
2. Ensure that the Defendant Goes to Court
One of the most significant responsibilities of a cosigner is to ensure that defendants show in court. It's usually thought that cosigners are only responsible for getting a defendant into their first court. Still, it is their responsibility to ensure that they make all court appearances as scheduled since the bond remains in effect until the case is resolved.
3. Possible Additional Costs
Depending on the course of the defendant's action, the cosigner is subject to additional fees. For instance, when a defendant skips court dates, it's more likely the bail bonds agency will have to pay a fugitive recovery business to find and return the defendant to jail without the opportunity to bail. This puts the cosigner responsible for paying for the extra services like this.
What You Should Know About Bail Bonds Cosigning
Before you agree to cosign a loved one to be bailed out of jail, you must know several factors about your decision to ensure that it's sensible and doesn't affect you. Some of the aspects that you must know about include the following:
1. Your Decision Might Affect Your Credit
Most bail agencies inquire about the cosigner's credit to determine whether he or she is suitable to be a prospective cosigner. You should read the contract carefully to know its terms to determine whether the crediting factors provided are compilable. Failure to honor your obligation as a cosigner may lead to bond forfeiture, and the bail agency might take legal action on you and adversely affect your credit rating.
2. The Contract is Binding Until the Case is Fully Disposed
As stated earlier, most people assume that a contract agreement between a bond agency and a cosigner is enforceable only after the first court appearance. The truth is, the bond is binding throughout the stages of court proceedings. Cases can last up to years until they are solved. That's why it's crucial to consider how well you know your defendants before making a long-term commitment once you accept to be a cosigner.
3. Your Indemnity Agreement with the Bail Agency is Enforceable in Court
Apart from the adverse credit actions, becoming a bail bonds cosigner can put you on the wrong side of the law. Bail agencies can file a civil lawsuit against a cosigner after a defendant has defaulted a bail bond contract as a means to recover their forfeited bail. This would potentially affect the cosigner's credit rating, complicate their professional licenses, or even result in the seizure of their properties.
Qualification of a Cosigner
Before our San Diego County bond agency accepts your cosigner, they must take note of several factors to decide whether that person qualifies to cosign for your bail release. Some of these factors are as follows:
1. The Credit History
Similar to applying for a loan, your cosigner's credit history is a crucial deciding factor. A good credit history indicates that the person involved in the cosigning will respect and honor the agreement that we've set forth. The better your cosigner's credit history is, the easy is to trust you.
2. Good Job History
The job history of your cosigner is something else that every bail bonds agency should consider. Ideally, a good cosigner should have a steady job for an extended period. Every bail bonds agency expects to know whether the cosigner would be able to make payment when defendants cannot do so since they will be held responsible for their actions.
3. Being Responsible
A reliable cosigner is all that every bond agency needs to see. If you are trustworthy, it makes it easier for the bail agency to offer their professional assistance.
What You Should Know About San Diego County Bail Schedule
Every California county has established its bail schedule to determine how much you should pay for specific charges. Bail schedules work as the basis for judges who will ultimately decide how much it would cost to release a defendant out of custody. However, several factors can influence the decision made on the accused.
Judges can reduce your bail amount if you have a good standing with the local community, own a home, have steady employment, portray a family presence in court, and have a non-violent disposition on your arrest. In San Diego County, the current jail schedule came into effect on 1st January 2005. Some of the general information you need to know about the bail schedule in San Diego County is as follows:
- County clerks and jailers should accept bail release for anyone held in custody for misdemeanor or infraction for the specific amount that has been set for every charge. If there is more than one charge, the bail must be in the total amount for every charge.
- You can give a bail release from custody in cash or a surety bond provided by a certified surety insurer.
- The bail schedule includes a column titled "CT," which means that the defendant must attend all the specific court dates.
- Defendants must attend all second and subsequent offenses for all misdemeanors unless otherwise stated.
- A penalty assessment is levied on bail amount collected whenever application under Penal Code 1464, Vehicle Code 42006, and Fish and Game Code 7600. The abbreviation "PC" marked on the bail schedule stands for penalty assessment.
- Penalty assessment is not added to the bail on mandatory court appearances ticked at the designated "CT" column.
- The bail amount for misdemeanor violations that are not in the schedule is $500, with mandatory court appearances.
- The bail amount for second infraction offenses is the same as the first offense unless the schedule quotes a higher amount.
San Diego County's bail amount ranges from as low as $35 for infractions to as high as $100,000 for serious felonies. Our San Diego County bail bond agents will help you secure any amount needed for your release, depending on the decision made by the judge.
Information About San Diego County Local Jails, Police Stations and Courts
1. San Diego Central Jail
1173 Front Street
San Diego, CA 92101
2. San Deigo County Jail
1173 Front Street
San Diego, CA 92112
3. San Diego City Jail
446 Alta Rd.
San Diego, CA 92154
4. Vista Detention Facility
325S. Melrose, Ste. 200
Vista, CA 92083
5. San Diego Central Courthouse
220 West Broadway
San Diego, CA 92101
6. San Deigo Hall of Justice
3330 West Broadway
San Diego, CA 92101
7. Madge Bradley Building
1409 Fourth Avenue
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 450 - 7575
8. Kearny Mesa Courthouse
8950 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92123
(858) 634 - 1800
9. East County Regional Court
250 East Main Street
El Cajon, California 92020
(619) 456 - 4100
10. South County Regional Court
500 3rd Avenue
Chula Vista, CA 91910
(619) 746 - 6419
11. Ramona Courthouse
Ramona, CA 92065
(760)738 - 2400
12. San Diego County Sherrif’s Department
10282 Rancho Bernardo Rd.
San Diego, CA 92102
(619) 744 - 9500
13. San Diego Police Department
72222 Skyline Drive
San Diego, CA 92114
(619) 527 - 3500
14. San Diego County Sheriff's Department
10282 Rancho Bernardo Rd.
San Diego, CA 92127
(858) 521 - 5200
Find a Reliable Bail Bonds in San Diego County Near Me
At 24 Hour Online Bail Bonds, we offer quality and prompt bail bond services to those seeking these services in San Diego County and the larger Carlifonia. For more information, call us at 800-930-8999 and let us help you secure your loved one's freedom.