"California Bail, Bail Bonds and Bail Bondsman"
California Bail, Bail Bonds and Bail Bondsman Body Although bail and bail bonds exist in all fifty states, each state has its own set of laws, statutes and licensing requirements. In the state of California there are two entities that set bail bond laws and regulations: California Insurance Department and California Penal Code. In essence, California Insurance Department licenses and regulates bail bond agents, while the California Penal Codes sets forth all of the laws allowing and governing the use of bail. Bail is an amount of money set by the presiding court or magistrate to guarantee that the defendant will appear in court to face legal proceedings for the crimes charged. The amount of bail charged will vary greatly depending on the crime, prior convictions and flight risk of the defendant. Some charges such as capital offenses are ineligible for bail. Under California law, all misdemeanors are eligible for bail. Regardless of whether the person charged is ultimately found guilty or innocent, the amount of the bail paid is refunded by the courts at the conclusion of the legal proceedings. Failure of the defendant to appear in court on scheduled dates results in issuance of a warrant for arrest and forfeiture of the bond amount to the state of California. The purpose of bail is to allow for the legal right of "innocent until proven guilty" guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution without incarceration of an individual prior to determination of guilt or innocence. On the other side of the coin, the courts whose job it is to enforce and administer the law need some guarantee that the accused will be present in court to face charges and provide a defense. Hence the bail schedule is set to reflect that balance between the risk of harm to society due to the nature of the crime and the individual's legal rights. However it is up to the discretion of the court to determine the bail amount using the bail schedule set by county of the court as only a form of guidance. If a defendant or his or her attorney feels that bail is excessive, they can file a motion for reduction of bail and if not granted make an appeal to that or another court for appeal for bail reduction. In those cases where a defendant cannot make bail, he or she can make use of bail bondsman or agency to post bail. A bail bondsman is an essence an insurance agent that covers the cost of a defendant's bail for a set fee. He or she is insuring that the defendant will appear in court to face due process related to the charges filed. The set fee in the state of California is 10% percent but can be lower or higher depending on the bail bondsman. A bail bonds is also sometimes referred to as a surety bond especially in those cases that involve the use of collateral to secure payment of the bond amount. Not all bail agents accept collateral for payment of the 10% fee. Some agents will offer payment plans that involve an agreed upon schedule for fee payment. About Author: Orange County Bail Bonds, located across the street from the Orange County jail facility, is a family owned and operated Orange County bail bond service and has been serving the bail bonds needs of Californians since 1963. To locate an inmate in Orange County click here.