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Are bail bonds public record?

Bail is a fixed amount of security in the form of money. This set amount of money acts as insurance between two parties namely, court and the defendant. Defendants can make the payment of bail in cash. However, many people can afford the payment of bail amount as the bail amount is set at a high amount. The defendant may not be financially stable to pay the pail for themselves. In such cases, they may take help of a bail agent or bail bondsman.

What is a bail bond?

A bail bond is a surety provided on behalf of the defendant. The surety bond is provided by the surety bond company via the bail agent or the bail bondsman. The bail agent than secures the bail of the defendant. The Hugh Knotts Bail Bonds is one such company. The bail bond is of two types:

  • Criminal bail bond: Criminal bail bond is used when the defendant is in custody for criminal cases. The bond guarantees that the defendant will not be absent for any trial when called by the court. Criminal bail bond also guarantees the payment of fines and penalties decided by the court against the defendant.
  • Civil bail bond: These bail bonds are used in case of civil cases. Civil bail bond makes a guarantee for the payment of debt, interests,and costs that are assessed against the defendant.

What happens if the defendant fails to appear in the court?

In order to post a bail bond, the defendant pays 10% of the bail amount to the bail bondsman. The bail agent than secures the amount of the bail as collateral. If the defendant fails to attend the trial of the court the bail bond stands forfeited. The court than requires the balance 90% amount of the bail to be paid to the court by the defendant. In such a case, the bail bondsman makes the payment of bail amount to the court through the defendant’s collateral.

Bail bonds can be used as a public record and can be obtained from the district clerk — however, only the name of the company and the amount of the bond. Personal information provided to the agent is not available as public record.

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