A bail bond is a signed promise by a defendant to pay an amount assigned by the court if the defendant fails to appear for his or her trial. Bail bonds are used in both criminal and civil courts.
Once a defendant signs a bail bond, he or she is released from police custody until the trial. If the defendant fails to appear, the court will issue a warrant for the defendant's arrest and the amount of the bond will be forfeited to the court.
Bail bonds contain important information, including the defendant's name, the criminal charge, and the amount of the bail. Bail bonds are filed with the court and are available to the public through court records.
When a bail bond is issued, the court setting bail issues a bail ticket to the police, or to the jail or prison holding the defendant. Records of bail bonds can thus be found in court records, as well as in records maintained by the police, jail, or prison. In some locations, you can access a bail bond through the county clerk's office as well.
The best way to locate a bail bond is to perform a court records search. If you know the defendant's name and the court handing the defendant's case, you can use the online tools available on this site to find the individual's court record. The court record will contain information on the bail, including the amount and whether the defendant appeared in court or defaulted on the bail.
Police, jails, and prisons also have records of the bail tickets they have received. Some counties provide online access to jail records, which will list the defendant's bond amount. You may also be able to contact the law enforcement office directly for information on a bail bond.
In the case of more recent arrests, or for ongoing cases, bail bond information may not yet be available in certain online databases. You may be able to contact the court directly in order to receive bail bond information.
Online databases can provide bail bond information. In some locations, the prison system or the court clerk's office maintains a database for bail bond information. If you know the defendant's name, you can determine the amount of the bail and the criminal charge.
Keep in mind that a bail bond does not indicate whether someone is guilty of a crime. But they do contain valuable information on a person's history and any ongoing legal problems.