While bonding someone out of jail, one of the common questions I get from the cosigner is what happens if they want to revoke a bond, so I thought I would write an article about it. There a multiple ways a bond can be revoked. Judges can revoke bonds, as well as bondsmen. However, this article only pertains to having a bail bondsman revoke a bond within the state of Virginia.
How to Revoke a Bond thru a Bondsman
Recall from the article of how bail bonds work that when someone is incarcerated and given a bond, a loved one will call a bondsman to get their loved one out of jail. Typically, they’ll meet the bondsman at the jail. There, the paperwork will be filled out, payment made, and the defendant will be bonded out. This process usually takes quite a while, typically anywhere from 90 minutes to several hours.
It’s during this process that the bondsman and cosigner converse and have an opportunity to talk. It’s not uncommon to get the question, “So, suppose, hypothetically, that I want to revoke a bond. How does that work?”
Before answering that question, it probably goes without saying that that question is a bit of a red flag. Suppose you’re cosigning for a bail bond and you’re totally secure that your loved one will go to court complete the process. That thought would never cross your mind. The only reason to ponder this is you’re either concerned that the person won’t go to court, or the relationship with the defendant is not solid. So, that type of question does lead to a whole new conversation between us. It’s not a deal breaker, but I usually respond with a questions like: “Are you confident the person will show to court?”, or “Is there something else I should know?”.
That being said, there are two scenarios to revoke a bond. The first is when a defendant failed to appear to court, and the second is when the cosigner wants to revoke a bond prior to the court date.
In the first case, where the defendant fails to appear and it’s apparent it wasn’t a mistake but a conscious decision to skip court, the defendant then becomes a fugitive. The process then becomes to locate the person and get him or her back in jail. However, there are many variables to this. Such as, is the cosigner genuinely cooperative in getting the defendant back in jail and off the bond, or is the cosigner hiding the defendant. I recall I had one case where it was glaringly apparent that the girlfriend (cosigner) knew where the defendant was and was lying to me about it. She was with him when he was apprehended. I’ve had other cases where the cosigner locates the defendant and calls the police themselves. In either case, once the defendant is caught back put back in jail, the bondsman can then go to the jail to revoke the bond.
For the second case, the cosigner wants to revoke the bond prior to the upcoming court date. There are two different reasons for this. One reason is when the cosigner feels the defendant will not show up to court. This is serious, and most all bondsmen will act on this to get the person back in jail to protect themselves and the cosigner financially. The other reason is when there’s a personal falling out between the cosigner and defendant. I can’t speak for other bondsmen, but I handle this on a case-by-case basis. I don’t like to revoke bonds because of a lover’s spat. We’re talking about someone’s freedom, so if I feel the defendant will fulfill all court appearances, I’ll try to find a solution for the cosigner and defendant which works. For example, if the defendant can find another cosigner, the original cosigner can be released from the bond and replaced with someone else. However, should a bondsman choose to revoke the bond, the defendant must be apprehended and taken to jail where the bond can then be revoked.
I hope this was helpful. If you have any questions or need a bond, please call me at 804-833-2785. Thanks for reading.