In Missouri, most courts typically set the bond amount either when the defendant is charged or when the defendant first appears in court for his or her arraignment. In many cases, if a bond is not set at the time the defendant is charged, a St. Louis criminal defense attorney can make arrangements with the court prior to the arraignment to have a bond set. This would allow you or a loved one to post bond and to get of out of jail as soon as possible.
Once the defendant’s bond is set, the court will also designate the bond as a “cash only bond” or a “surety bond.” Needless to say, a cash only bond must be posted in the form of cash. A professional bail bond company’s surety bond will not be accepted if the bond is “cash only.” If a surety bond is accepted by the court, the defendant may request the assistance of a bail bondsman. A bail bondsman will typically write a surety bond to the court and the defendant will pay a 10% fee to the bondsman. For instance, if a bond is set at $50,000 and a surety bond is accepted, the defendant will usually pay $5,000 to a bondsman to cover the bond. Many bondsmen will require at least half the amount paid up-front with the remainder to be paid in several payments.
It is important to understand that a defendant in Missouri does not have an automatic right to a 10% cash-only bond. However, in many cases, a St. Louis criminal defense attorney can get the court to agree to a 10% cash-only bond.
It is imperative to contact an attorney prior to posting bond for a loved one. In many cases, an attorney may be able to get the bond reduced, thus saving you money. Additionally, an attorney will assist you with the bail bond process and put you in contact with a trusted bondsman if necessary.
If you have been contacted by a loved one to help them post bond, contact the St. Louis criminal defense attorneys of Henderson & Waterkotte, P.C. today to assist you with the bond process.