Once an individual has been arrested for an alleged offense, they are required to pay bail or bond as a guarantee they will appear for any hearings or subsequent court proceedings if they are released. Typically, the suspect can be released when bond is posted by his attorney or bail bondsman, his own recognizance (his own word), or if he pays the entire amount of bail in full.

In many circumstances, a bail or bond amount can be negotiated with the prosecutor and law enforcement officials to a more reasonable, lower amount. Other times, an experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to convince the court to set bond when the judge has previously expressed concern over granting bond.

Types of Bonds In Atlanta

Bail Bond

This type of bond is also known as a surety bond and is a written agreement between the alleged offender and bondsman where you agree to pay a percentage of the bail or bond amount to the bondsman and they will in turn post the bond for you. This means they are liable for the full amount of the bond if you do not appear in court. A bondsman usually requires a fee in 10% to 15% of the bond amount.

Cash Bond

This type of bond is where the alleged offender pays the total amount of bail by cash or cashier’s check. If the individual fails to appear, the entire amount of bail will be kept by the court. This amount is usually at least $5,000, but can be a much greater amount.

Property Bond

This type of bond is a written agreement between the alleged offender and the sheriff where ownership of the suspect’s property is automatically transferred to the court if they do not appear. This type of bond typically requires a large amount of equity in the home, and most counties in Georgia will require the equity in the property to be more than double the amount of bail.

Driver’s License Collateral

In some instances involving misdemeanor offenses except DUI, the court may require the suspect to post their driver’s license as collateral to be released on bail instead of posting monetary or property bond. If the individual fails to appear, their license will be suspended.

Personal Recognizance

This type of bond is also known as oral recognizance (OR) and is a promise to return to all court proceedings without posting any monetary amount or property. This type of bond is usually only permitted for minor offenses.

If an individual fails to appear at any court proceeding after they are released on bond, a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest. The prosecutor will file a motion for bond forfeiture and the full amount of bail or bond will be turned over to the sheriff.

This means if you paid a bondsman a percentage to post bond for you, they are now liable to pay the full amount of bail or bond, and will attempt to locate you and turn you over to the sheriff so they will not have to pay the amount.

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