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Finding Out About Financing

When you start shopping for a car, you might be more concerned with additional features and specialty paint jobs than you are about the monthly bill. Unfortunately, the wrong financing can cost you dearly. Compound interest never sleeps, which means that you might be paying much more than you should if you work with the wrong lender. I want to help you to make great financial decisions, which is why I created this website. However, if you can remember a few tricks and keep those payments to a minimum, you can drive away with the car of your dreams without breaking the bank.

Finding Out About Financing

What Bail Bonds Are And How They Work

by Colleen Porter

The Definition and Purpose of a Bail Bond

In a criminal trial, the first step is that the defendant is indicted. This means that he is formally charged in court with the crime. He or his attorney will usually request bail--the right to remain free until the trial is over in return for posting a given sum of money with the court. The more serious the crime, and the greater the danger in the eyes of the court that the defendant will flee rather than appearing for trial, the higher the bail will be. In many cases, the amount of the bail demanded by the court is more than the defendant can afford. This is where the bail bondsman comes in.

A "bond," in legal terminology, is a guarantee. In return for a percentage of the bail amount--usually 10%--the bondsman guarantees to the court that the defendant will show up on his trial date. If the defendant doesn't appear, the bail bondsman, such as those at Nickel Bail Bonds, is liable to the court for the full amount of the bail.

What the Bail Bondsman Wants from You

The bail bondsman wants to avoid having to pay off the bond. Therefore, he'll want some kind of assurance that you will show up for your trial. The first thing he'll look at is whether you have a "stable" situation--do you have a local job, a family, a house, or other reasons why you probably won't run away? If you are a "drifter," he probably won't sell you the bond--it's too risky for him. He also might sell you the bond, but at a higher price (like 15% or 20% of the bail amount). The judge will already have made this evaluation about you, but the bondsman is entitled to make his own judgment.


You may have to provide the bondsman with a "lien" on your valuable property, such as your car or house. The property will have to be valuable enough so that if you don't show up in court (an act known as "skipping bail"), the bondsman will be able to recover the bail amount by seizing that property (remember, he's liable for the full amount if you don't show up). Putting a lien on your house is the most common way to guarantee a large bail bond.

Remember, you don't get the money you paid for the bond back even if you do show up in court.