Tips For Protecting Your Bail Bonds Agency From Failure To Appear Issues

Posted on: 15 July 2019

As a bail bondsman, one of the hardest things on your business is an increase in failure to appear revocations. They cost you significantly, not only in lost bail money but in the lost time spent trying to locate the defendant after the fact. The good news is that there are some ways that you can reduce the percentage of failure to appear incidents that you face. Here are a couple of things that you should consider to help you minimize these issues.

Choose Your Clients Carefully

One of the first reasons why you may be seeing an increase in your failure to appear rates could be due to your client selection. If you are offering bail bonds to anyone who applies, you may be issuing bonds to less-reliable clients. In those cases, you take a greater risk of those individuals not showing up for court. 

If you increase your client evaluation process and become more selective about who you issue bonds to, you can help to minimize those instances of defendants not appearing in court. Start evaluating every client based on their level of risk, and only issue bonds to those that you feel are lower risk. 

While there are never any guarantees that a defendant will show up for their court dates, there are a few key things you can look for. For example, issue bonds only to those who have the financial means to post collateral for their bond. When they are financially invested in their freedom, they are more likely to do as they should. Further, consider the family and professional ties that each potential client has. The more roots they have in an area, the less likely they are to flee or skip their court dates.

In addition, you should also assess their criminal history. Individuals who have repeat offenses, or worsening levels of offenses, are a higher risk when it comes to bailing them out of jail. Finally, look for clients who are employed, and try to avoid issuing bonds to anyone who has the means to flee the country.

Stress The Importance Of Compliance

Especially if you are issuing a bond to someone who has never been in jail before, it is essential for you to clearly explain the requirements and stress the importance of compliance. Make sure that every client you issue a bond for fully understands the potential consequences of missing a court date or skipping out on any of their other bail conditions. 

The clearer you are about the gravity of the situation, the more serious they are likely to take it themselves. Make sure that you are in constant communication about their whereabouts, including where they are working and where they are staying. Communicate the same information about the gravity of the situation to those close family members or friends who are involved in the bond process, too.

Communicate With Them Regularly With Reminders

Invest in a communication platform that lets you send text, email, or automated call reminders about important dates and deadlines. That way, you can just plug in those crucial dates and let the platform handle all of your reminder messages to your clients.

Sending reminder messages can help to encourage your clients to show up to court on time. Whether they have forgotten about the court date, or they don't think you're serious about enforcing your bail bond, sending these reminders can address both.

Not only does the reminder a day or two ahead of time ensure that he or she isn't likely to forget the hearing, but it also reminds them that you are staying on top of their bail requirements and the case itself.

Contact an attorney like Raymond Martinez Attorney at Law at a local bail bond service for more information.