Property Bonds 101

Property bonds are one way of posting bail that involves using your property as collateral. There are risks involved in using property bonds rather than working with a bail bond agent in Upper Marlboro, including losing your property. Before you consider posting bail with a property bond, it’s important to fully understand the agreement you are entering into with the court.

What are property bonds?

With a property bond, you provide the court with property collateral—often, your home—as a financial guarantee that the defendant will show up for all of his or her court dates. Property bonds are typically reserved for cases with high bail amounts, usually over $100,000. Depending on where you live and the requirements of the court, there may be rules regarding what kind of property can be used for bail and that all taxes on the property are paid in full.

What are the risks of using property bonds?

The biggest risk of a property bond is that you could potentially lose ownership. If the defendant does not show up for every scheduled court appearance, the court may seize the property. This risk is part of the reason that property bonds are not a common choice for posting bail and why it is only used in circumstances when bail amounts are very high.

What are the alternatives for posting bail?

Instead of property bonds, many people who need to post bail opt for use a surety bond obtained through a bail bond agent. The agent guarantees to the court that the defendant will be present for scheduled court dates and obtains an insurance policy that will pay the court if the defendant does not show up. For this service, the bail bond agent charges the person who arranged the bail a fee based on a percentage of the bail amount. Typically, the fees can be spread out in a payment plan to make even fees for large bail amounts manageable.

Categories: Property Bonds

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