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  • Writer's pictureViner Law Firm

What You Need to Know about Types of Bail Bonds

If anything were ever to happen to you or someone you love, it is important to know ahead of time what your options are. In the instance that you or a loved one is arrested, it would be very important to know about and fully understand the bail bond process and various types of bonds available. Before you call a bail bondsman, here are a few things you can brush up on so you know what types of services the bondsman can offer you.

Cash Bond

The simplest of bonds, this is when someone can pay the entire bail amount with cash. This may be the most straight-forward type of bail that will get your loved one out of jail quickly, but the money used for bail will be tied up until your loved one’s court date. If you will need this money to pay for an attorney or something else before the court date, you might want to think twice about funding the bail this way. This type of bond is something anyone can deal with on their own, without a bail bond agency.

Property Bond

If you don’t have enough liquidity to pay for a bail bond, one of the ways you can get money is to do a property bond. Typically in a property bond, a house is what is used as collateral to secure the bail bond. The equity of the property needs to be 150% of the bail amount needed to get released from jail, and therefore can be somewhat complicated. It can also be very risky putting a house up as collateral for a bail bond.

Surety Bond

For this type of bond you will need the help of a bail bonds company. This is when you cannot secure the funds to pay a bail bond on your own, and you need someone to help get the money for you or your loved one after an arrest. Only licensed agents of a bail bonds company can provide this type of bond. A bail bonds company will provide the funds to get you or your loved one released, but you will have to purchase this service for a percentage of the total bail amount that is typically 10%.

Federal Bond

A federal bond is a more serious situation. Federal bail is set by a judge in a courtroom setting and must be requested by the defendant or the attorney in the case. Federal bonds are thought to be higher risk because they are associated with federal crimes, therefore are more costly than a standard bond would be.

Immigration Bond

These bonds are necessary for people who are charged with foreign national crimes. Immigration bonds are very expensive, high risk and can be difficult to obtain. Not considered a criminal case bond, these are often imposed along with a bail bond.

In addition to these most traditional types of bail bonds, there are some other options that can happen when you get arrested and need to get out of jail.


To be released from jail on your own recognizance means that a judge has decided to allow a criminal defendant to be released from custody without having to post bail. A defendant who has been ROR-ed must sign a promise to show up in court. This is commonly requested for first-time court appearances.


ELMO stands for Electronic Monitor, and can be mandated when someone is released on a regular bail bond. Usually in the form of an ankle bracelet, the ELMO sets off an alarm if a person wearing it goes too far from their own home, which is usually where the base is located.

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