A Guide to Joining the World of Bail Bondsman
Becoming one of the country’s bail bondsmen can be a risky but rewarding business. There are some states that won’t allow people who are arrested to post a bail commercially. But these types of companies are extremely popular in those states which allow them to exist. These are the steps that you want to take if you want to go into this business.
Check the Regulations in Your State
Find out the policy your state has about private bail bonds. Check if that state where you’re planning to set up the business permits people to use a private bail bond to post bail. There are some states that don’t allow these types of bonds and there are other states that have particular guidelines when it comes to private bonds. The Department of Insurance in your state will be where you can find the policies of your state.
States like Wisconsin, Illinois, Oregon and Kentucky don’t permit commercial bail. It’s allowed by Massachusetts but there are rigorous requirements that they have regarding licensing new bondsman. Georgia and Texas also have particular guidelines for bail bondsman.
Get information about becoming a bondsman in the state you live
- Each of the states might have various regulations and rules when it comes to licensing. Those who have their license in another state may not be able to operate in a different state. The majority of states will only require a diploma from high school as their prerequisite for becoming a bondman. But it’s also helpful to have a bachelor’s, master’s or associate’s degree in business, economics, finance or law is going to also helpful.
- It’s possible that you’re not going to be able to get licensed if you’ve been convicted of a felony, so they’re going to do check your background. In those states that don’t license or certify bondsman, being convicted of a felony won’t stop you from becoming one, even though you may have trouble finding a firm willing to hire you.
- Ask the Department of Insurance that your state has for some information about schools for bail bondsman and requirements for licensing.
- Remember that even though there are many benefits when it comes to this line of work, which mostly is financial gain, there also is a lot of risk. If you are serving as one of the recovery agents for the offenders who never reported for court, there could be violent encounters that you have to deal with. Sometimes a bail bondsman will hire some bounty hunters outside of their business because of this. It’s also possible that you’re going to have to pay for the rest of the bail fees if your client misses their court date.
Complete any types of pre-licensing requirements or courses
It may be required in your state that you have to complete a course so that you can go into this line of work. These kinds of course are designed to prepare you for your licensing exam and the remainder of licensing process. any pre-licensing courses or requirements.
Even though the state is offering this course, they don’t always require it. Regardless, it’s a good plan to finish it.
If your state requires it, take your written exam
This exam can last up to an hour and includes 50 to 60 questions, all multiple choice. It’s possible that you’re going to have to pay a fee from $40 – $100 for taking the test. Check with your state’s Department of Insurance and they can tell you when and where the test’s being given as well as how you can sign up.
- It’s also possible that you’re going to get fingerprinted at exam time, and this can cost extra.
- Apply for licensing with your state
After you’ve passed the exam and you’ve met all the other eligibilities, you can apply for the license. It’s likely that you’re going to apply with your state’s Department of Insurance, as well as pay their fee.
- You’ll need to have your score from the licensing examination.
- There are other requirements that will change by state.
Start or join one of the bail bond companies
When you join an already existing company, it can help you with getting the experience you’ll need if you decide to start your own company. This also may help you with creating your financial partner network. Beginning a business on your own might require another license as well as other types of requirements like incorporation and your own surety bond.
- Take some courses for continuing your education. These types of courses might be necessary for renewing your license. These licenses can be valid from 1-3 years.
- There are some states require have at least six hours of continuing education courses per year. When applying for your license, make sure you check with the state so you know what is expected.
These are the steps that you want to take if you are planning to enter the network of bail bondsman. You can find that this type of work is difficult but that it’s also very rewarding. It’s not for everyone but those who do it are happy with their work.
We are located within walking distance of the Lee County and Hendry County Jails. We offer prompt, courteous services to obtain the quick release of our clients from Southwest Florida detention facilities. We also offer bond postings outside our local area through our Surety Network. We accept all major credit cards, Western Union, and personal checks.