We’ve posted in the past about LA County’s Zero-Bail Policy and its effects. Knowing how the absence of bail affects you is one thing, but it’s also important to understand why bail works. Below are the most common reasons why people tend not to skip bail once it has been posted.
Eventually, You Will Get Caught
Most people who skip bail only get away for a little while. Once someone fails to show up for court, bail is revoked and a warrant is issued for their arrest. Once they are rearrested, they probably won’t be eligible for bail again and, if they are, it’s almost guaranteed that it will cost more the second time around.
Additionally, the defendant will probably face the additional charge of failing to appear – which can increase their penalties when they do go to court.
Your Collateral is Forfeit
To bail someone out, one needs to put up either cash or a valuable piece of property as collateral. Once it has been established that a defendant skips bail, the cash and/or collateral put up to secure bail is forfeited to the court.
The Co-Signer is Responsible
If someone else signed the bail bond, they are called the co-signer. If the defendant skips bail, the person who co-signed the bond is going to be held financially responsible for the full amount of bail. This is legally binding, so if you plan to bail someone out of jail, only ever bail out those whom you know well and trust to be financially responsible.
Despite all this, some people still skip bail and fail to appear in court even when someone else bailed them out of jail, but it’s far less likely that it will happen. Most people don’t want to break the law and then drag their family and/or friends down with them by skipping bail.