About Bail Bonds
How Jail Works
The San Francisco Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant St. houses most of the county jail facilities for the City and County of San Francisco. Two of these jails are located in the Hall of Justice on Bryant Street. The two newer jails, opened in 1994, are located at 425 7th street and connect to the Hall of Justice. All San Francisco Jails are operated by the County Sheriff’s Department Custody Division. All individuals arrested by SFPD will undergo a short information gathering process and be booked into the 7th Street Jail. After that time they can be bailed out, however, you can start the bail bond process immediately by calling us at 415-431-7750.
What does the intake process entail?
The Sheriffs Dept. will begin their intake process i.e. fingerprints, mug shots, warrant checks and contraband search upon arrival.
What is a Bail Bond?
A bail bond is an Insurance Policy that guarantees a person’s appearance in court. This Insurance Policy has nothing to do with the merits or facts of the case. The bail agency posts this bond with the court and guarantees the appearance of the defendant in court. If the defendant appears in court as ordered, then the bail bond is never in jeopardy. However, if the defendant fails to appear, the bond is forfeited and the bail agency has 180 days to return the defendant to court. If the bail agency fails to do so, the full amount of the bond must be paid to the court ultimately by the co-signers of the bail bond. The cost of a bail bond, regulated by the State of California is 10% of the bail amount.
Does the full amount of the bond have to be paid?
The only time one would have to pay the full amount of the bail bond is if the defendant “failed to appear” in court and was not returned to the court within 180 days. Although this bail bond is an insurance policy guaranteeing the appearance of the defendant in court, the insurance policy is guaranteed by the co-signers, thus they would be held fully liable for the bail amount if the defendant was not returned to the court.
Is the premium returned upon the case being dismissed or completed?
As it is stated in the FIRST Clause in the Indemnity Agreement, the premium is the cost of the bail bond and it is fully earned upon the release of the person from jail. Once the bail bond is posted and accepted by the sheriff, and the defendant is released there is no refund of the premium. If you are on a payment plan the payments are still due no matter the outcome of the case.
What should be done if someone misses court while out on bail?
If someone misses court for any reason, you must first realize our agency was the very company that got them released from jail. We have the ability to file a motion with the court and have the bail bond reinstated back to the original terms. Therefore, it is our objective to keep the person out of jail on bail throughout court proceedings. Call our office immediately if there has been a failure to appear and we will schedule a new court date.
How do I know when my bail bond is completed and the co-signers and the defendant are no longer liable for the bail bond?
If the District Attorney decides to dismiss the case before the defendant ever has a court appearance or upon the completion of the case, the judge will “Exonerate” the bail bond in open court. At this point the bond is no longer active and the indemnitor and defendant are no longer liable for the bail bond; however, they are still liable for any outstanding premium and/or expenses incurred.
What happens if I miss a payment?
Understand that we issue our customers credit in an effort to work with the economic realities we all have. We attempt to set up payment plans that can be afforded. These payment plans are very important to our existence; therefore, it is important that the payments are made timely.