When an individual co-signs a bail bond he or she is known as the Indemnitor. Bond Indemnitor’s are typically a family member or close friend of the defendant. If you are considering co-signing a bail bond it is important that you know the defendant well and have full confidence in their ability to fulfill ALL court mandated obligations. When dealing with the bond agency you will be asked to sign a series of documents and it is in your best interest to read each documents and understand what you are signing. Your signature legally binds you to fulfill all responsibilities of an Indemnitor. If you are unsure at any point throughout this process make sure to ask questions.
Upon co-signing on behalf of the defendant you will be legally and financially responsible for making sure the defendant completes all court-mandated obligations and shows up to all court appearances required. The Indemnitor may also be asked to pledge collateral or security to guarantee the defendants cooperation and appearance in court.
If the defendant chooses to not return to court or fails to complete any court mandated obligations you, the Indemnitor, will be held responsible for the entire face amount of the bond. This means you will be legally required to pay the entire premium or any other fees associated with the bond. You will also be held accountable for any investigative fees and attorney cost. And may result in forfeiture of any pledged collateral.
Payment to Bondsman
It is Important to remember that the premium you pay to the bondsman for the original release of the defendant must be paid in full no matter the outcome of the case (dropped, dismissed, not filed, etc.) If any payment plan has been set up you must complete said payment plan. Once the payment is complete there will be no additional amount owed and the file will be closed.
Payment to Court
Although the premium must be paid in full no matter the outcome, the Indemnitor’s responsibility will be fulfilled upon completion of the defendant’s case. This means the defendant has shown up to all court mandated appearances, they are sentenced, the case is dismissed or the bond is exonerated. At this point no other money is owed to the court.
This is a general article for example purposes. As always, please contact us at 979-821-2663 regarding your specific case.