In the Tar Heel State, the services of bail bondsmen are readily available to those who lack money to make bail and temporarily free an arrested individual until trial. Many of them operate around the clock in order to provide swift assistance to anyone in distress. Although every established bail bondsman in Gastonia, NC or any neighboring community runs an agency to keep arrested people out of jail while their cases are being heard, some sectors of the society do not have high regard for such a professional.
Many people have a low opinion of bail bond agents because of making money off of desperate individuals. There may be unscrupulous characters out there, but most of the reasons bail bondsmen are feared stems from misconceptions. Below are the pervasively believed ones:
1. They Do Not Play by the Rules
The bail bond industry may be unregulated in many parts of America, but not in North Carolina. Aspiring bail bondsmen must apply for licensure in the North Carolina Department of Insurance. They must complete a two-day pre-licensing course to know the nuts and bolts of the trade.
While the bail bondsman licensing requirements in the state only include a high school diploma, many applicants pursue a high level of education, such as a bachelor’s degree in law or criminal justice, in order to prepare for their professional career.
Furthermore, bail bondsmen can become licensed if they do not hold a valid North Carolina driver’s license with no misdemeanor drug violations over the last 24 months and no felony convictions. Such rigorous requirements help ensure that only the applicants with unquestionable integrity can be granted a license.
2. They Collude With Local Courts
Experienced bail agents manage to establish relationships with local courts after plying their trade for a long time, but this does not mean that they are in collision with the authorities. Actually, they must not be employed as an attorney or a government worker of any position to fulfill their licensure requirements.
3. They Rob People Blind
No, they can’t charge whatever amount they want. They can only collect a portion of the money bail, which is usually 10%. Yes, bail bondsmen can make a lot of money per client, but they also take a considerable level of risk for helping an arrested individual out of jail.
4. They Accept Nothing but Cash
Most bail bondsmen probably prefer cash, but there are agencies that accept other forms of payment, including credit card and wire transfer. With their many years in the industry, many businesses have become considerate enough to offer flexible payment arrangement with certain clients.
5. They Always Demand a House as Collateral
Bail bondsmen reserve the right to ask for security for the bail in case the arrested person leaves town and does not appear in court. However, they do not specifically demand a piece of real estate. They accept other valuable assets, like jewelry, to secure the rest of the bail.
The fee a bail bondsman collects is non-refundable, but it is just a small price to pay to keep your arrested loved one from spending another minute behind bars while their case is being resolved.