What to do if I made arrangements with a bail bondsman over the phone to get a friend out of jail and was told that it would be $1000 and now thy want more money?

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What to do if I made arrangements with a bail bondsman over the phone to get a friend out of jail and was told that it would be $1000 and now thy want more money?

My friends bond was $10,000 and the bondsman I contacted, over the phone, told me it would be $1000 and I gave them a credit card number. I never signed anything and when my friend met with the bondsman they told them that there was a balance of $1015 still due and some kind of arrangement has been made to pay every two weeks. I never agreed to that and was only told about the $1000. Can they make my friend or me pay this extra amount? I never signed anything am I still liable for the bond? If I don’t sign the paperwork will my friend get put back in jail?

Asked on April 14, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Bondsmen usually charge a certain portion of the bond up front-- the quote of 10% of the bond they gave you is fairly standard in the bonding industry.  They then charge another percentage to be paid out while the defendant is on bond.  The obligation to pay the balance is on your friend, unless you agreed to pay an additional portion or signed something to pay more.  You should call the bondsman to make sure that you will not authorize any future payments to your card.  If your friend does not pay the balance as required in installments, then the bondsman could file a motion to go off the bond.  If the motion is granted, then a defendant is returned to jail to start the bonding process over with a new bonding  company.  Unless the contract specifically provides, the money you already paid will not be refunded. 


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