Is bail and bond the same thing?
Is bail and bond the same thing? Many people use these two terms interchangeably. However, bail and bond are two different words with two different meanings (even though they’re closely related).
Let’s take a quick look at the difference between bail and bond.
What is the difference between bail and bond?
When people refer to bail, they’re referring to the amount of money they have to pay to be released from jail. When bail is paid, this only releases the defendant from jail until his or her trial. Paying bail does not mean the defendant is released from jail forever.
Bail is refundable and will be returned to the defendant after trial (even if the defendant is found to be guilty).
However, if the defendant does not show up to trial, the total bail amount is forfeited.
The bail amount is determined by the judge. They use a variety of factors to come up with this amount, including how serious the current charge is and what their flight risk is.
Bond, on the other hand, is provided by a bail bond company. A bond is basically a promise or assurance to the bond company that you will return to court on your trial date. In exchange for this promise, the bail bond company will pay the full bail amount to the court.
Bonds are not free. Bail bond companies will charge a bail bond fee (usually around 10%), and they typically require a form of collateral on top of this fee.
Keep in mind, the bail bond fee is not returned.