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When a loved one gets arrested, be sure to take a deep breath and look out for these common bail bond scams.
Targeting people who are in a desperate state-of-mind is truly sad to see in this world but it happens all of the time. There are people out there that create bail bond scams targeting people who are trying to get loved ones out of jail. These scams capture way too many people and are easily avoided if you know what to look for. Here is a list of some of the most common bail bond scams that you need to be watching out for.
- The Cold Call: If you ever receive a call from someone that claims that one of your loved ones has recently been arrested, your red flags should be raised. This tactic is known as the cold call and they will usually begin by telling you that a loved one has been arrested and that they are a bail bondsman that can help you get them out of jail. If this happens to you, hang up and find the facts before taking any further steps. Verify if your loved one has been arrested, verify where they were arrested and where they are being held, then call a trustworthy and accredited bail bondsman to help you through the process.
- The Fake Error: Another scam that uses a phone call out of the blue. This scam starts by the person on the phone stating that there has been an error in the processing of the payment of the loan of a loved one. They will state that you need to pay immediately or else your loved one will go to jail. They might also not even mention an error and instead will demand an immediate wire transfer to keep your loved one’s bond from getting revoked. They want you to panic and act rather than thinking things through. Take the time to think things through, if you feel as if someone is rushing you and trying to force you to pay them quickly, there is a good chance this person is trying to commit bail bond fraud.
- Interest Rates: If a bail bondsman tries to charge you a high-interest rate on your bail, you should be wary of this person. Most bail bondsman won’t go over 15-20% of the total bail amount so if someone is trying to charge you beyond that amount, you should hang up and talk with another more reputable bail bondsman.
- Solicitors: There should not be bail bond agents prowling the halls of your local lock-up waiting for desperate family members. State agencies who regulate the bail industry frown on such behavior. Bail bond agents who solicit clients at jails are probably breaking the law. The person behind bars got arrested on suspicion of violating at least one law. You don’t need to add more law-breakers to the equation.
- No Contract/Pay Over The Phone: If someone tells you not to worry about the contract, you should start worrying. A contract is there to protect both parties in an agreement. Paying over the phone is something else to avoid because you cannot sign a contract over the phone. Always get a contract from your bondsman and read through it before signing it.
- Threatening Behavior: Many people don’t know their rights when it comes to bail bondsman. Some bond agents abuse their power and go to extremes when dealing with their clients. In many cases, bond agents who are threatening you are scammers and you should avoid these terrible people.
Contact us at Big Mike Bail Bonds to get a hold of one of our bond agents who are here to help you, not harm you.