Case Closed. Do I Get the Bondsman Money Back?

Court room

An arrest for a criminal offense can be a very stressful time. The stress escalates when the offender does not have the money to post bail and is facing detention until the court date.

A bail bondsman can help provide the financial means to post bail. But sometimes, there may be confusion surrounding this procedure, so here is the clarification needed to address questions that arise before, during and after posting bail and the subsequent bail bond financing process.

Does the Bail Bond Company Refund My Money After the Court Case is Over?

Many people believe that once the court case is over, they get all or a portion of their bond money back. Still, others believe that if they are found not guilty, they will get their bond money back.

Bail bonds themselves are used by the court as assurance that the offender or defendant, will return for their court appearance.

Do You Get Bail Money Back if Charges are Dropped?

According to Tennessee bail bond laws, bail bonds have nothing to do with court findings, whether found innocent or guilty.

How Long Does It Take to get Bail Money Back?

The upfront fees, called the bail premium are generally 10% of the bail amount, are paid to get the process started and these fees are non-refundable. A bail bondsman charges these upfront fees as payment for their services to assume the risk of the defendant returning for their court appearance.

In some cases, the bondsman may collect additional cash collateral in addition to the 10% fee.

This additional cash is used as sort of a contingency just in case additional expenses are incurred. If there are no additional expenses incurred, the cash collateral (not the upfront fee or bail premium) will be refunded to the defendant after their final court appearance.

There are also some cases in which a defendant can finance part of the bail premium (or bail bond) but is required to pay for the remaining balance.

Bail Bond Financing and Repayment

There can also be confusion surrounding bail bond financing and repayment of bond premium. Some people believe that if their case is over before paying off the balance of the bond premium, they are done with their payments to the bondsman.

People can get hung up on the fact that if their court case has ended, they don’t understand why it is necessary to pay any outstanding balance to their bondsman. However, the end of your court case has nothing to do with whether or not you should finish paying their fee. It makes no difference if your case takes 1 day or 1 year, the bondsman’s fee still needs to be paid in full.

For example, a misdemeanor charge goes through the court system much faster than a felony charge, which can take as long as a year or more. So, if the defendant does not pay the balance of the bondsman fee, the bondsman can pursue legal action against the defendant and any bond co-signers to recover their monies owed .

If the defendant or co-signer has to be taken to court for payment of owed bail bond fees and judgment is ruled in favor of the bondsman, collection may be enforced by garnishing the defendant’s or cosigner’s wages. More information can be found in the Tennessee code annotated regarding bail bonds.

As with any situation where it is necessary to borrow money, it is a legally binding contract that needs to be paid. Bond Agents are here to provide professional and knowledgeable bail services and for a reputable bail bond near me company in the greater Memphis area and throughout the state of Tennessee call United Bonding Company. United Bonding Company is also licensed to provide bail bonds to individuals in the Shelby County Juvenile Court.  

By clearing up misconceptions ahead of time with your bond agent surrounding bail bond premiums or upfront money, you will alleviate stress and make posting a bond for you or a loved one a quick and easy experience.


Please be advised that and United Bonding Company is not an attorney or law firm and does not provide legal advice. If you are seeking legal advice, you are strongly encouraged to consider consulting with a competent attorney in your jurisdiction who can provide you with legal advice on your particular matter given that individual state, county or city laws may vary. provides INFORMATION ONLY and the information provided is for informational purposes only AND IS NOT TO BE CONSTRUED OR SUBSTITUTED FOR LEGAL ADVICE. THE INFORMATION INCLUDED IN OR AVAILABLE THROUGH THE SITE MAY INCLUDE INACCURACIES OR TYPOGRAPHICAL ERRORS. No guarantees are made and the use of the website, content, and any information provided is at your own risk.