Ever thought of being part of the justice system and making it a business? Legally, that is. A bail bond agent is someone who pays bonds for criminal defendants. This becomes a business because he normally charges a 10% fee from the total amount of the bail. This is almost exclusively practiced in the United States.
Bond agents have agreements with their local courts, where they are contracted to pay a bond that will be paid to the court in cases where the defendants that the bond agent represents do not appear during the court hearings.
If their client or defendant does not show up for trial, a contractual agreement permits a bond agent to bring his client to court in order to retrieve the bond paid. Some states allow bail bond agents to sue their client for the same purpose. They may use the services of a bounty hunter for this. While businesses are reluctant to deal with this risky business, bail bond agents profit as their clients are released in only a matter of hours.
Here are the requirements and required documentation in how to become a licensed bail bonds agent.
- All interested applicants must comply with the legal age (and be at least 18 years old).
- The applicant should be a US citizen or a resident alien.
- Currently working in a licensed bail bond agency or has a job offer as a bail bond agent.
- Attended and successfully completed the required training to be able to apply for licensure
- Applicant must have no criminal convictions in the past 10 years that might hinder him to function effectively as a bail bonds agent, or a criminal conviction that might also affect public safety.
- The documents that you are required to attach in your application are: a filled-out Bail Bond Agent License Application Form, necessary application fee (this is dependent on the city or state where you are applying for licensure), your surety insurance license information and also provide the name of the company you are affiliated with or are securing employment with.
And here are the required steps and processes on how to apply for license as a bail bonds agent:
- Ask for information from your local Department of Insurance office about institutions offering licensure training for bail bond (usually called Limited Surety Agent’s License).
- Your school administrator can provide you with the pre-requisites and standard procedures in securing a Department of Insurance licensing certification.
- After completion of the training and submitting complete documents, you may now forward all of these to your agent application.
Note that bail posting, bail money, jail bonds, surety bonds, bail enforcement or similar subjects are governed and differ by state. Make sure to check these differences and learn about the laws on bail for your state. Further, there are states such as Illinois, Kentucky, Oregon, and Wisconsin that do not allow bail bond agents’ operations. But if your state does allow it, make sure to follow all procedures to operate legally.