Sharing an important query that came across our live chat earlier this week:

“… Hopefully you can help us out. We live in Georgia and got a phone call from our neighbor who happened to be vacationing in Virginia Beach when her husband was arrested and charged with simple assault resulting from a fight in a bar. They called us because they don’t know anybody in Virginia and I’m hoping you can help me out by clarifying the bail process when you need to bail someone out that’s been arrested in another state…”

While we were able to help them resolve their issue in a timely fashion, we felt that it was important to share the information so that anybody reading this knows what to do if they should ever find themselves in a similar situation.

Let’s be honest — getting arrested is a harrowing ordeal. Now imagine getting arrested in another state. Scary, right? So what is it that must be done if you or a loved one finds yourself on the wrong end of such a scenario where somebody is counting on you to bail them out? Stay calm and stay true to the process, basically. While it does add a few extra steps, the fact that it’s in another jurisdiction shouldn’t be such a bigger deal.

Make Contact

The first thing you’ll want to do is to find out where the defendant is being held, which would require a call to the law enforcement agency or department that made the arrest. If that’s a dead end, check with whoever is in charge of housing pretrial detainees for that jurisdiction. Once you locate the facility where the defendant is being detained, call them to determine if they will allow you to post bail over the phone, whether remotely or via some means. If not, chances are that the bail might require payment in-person, which means that you will probably need to contact a bonding agent that’s local to where the defendant is being held. If it’s possible that the bail can be posted remotely, however, the payment and necessary paperwork can be processed over the phone, saving you the hassle of paying in person.

Find a Local, Licensed Bail Bondsman

Because bail bonding agents are only licensed to work in the license-granting state, you’ll need to find a bail bondsman that’s licensed in the state where the detainee is being held. A simple Internet search should yield you the results you need to begin calling local bonding companies within that specific jurisdiction. In addition, a licensed bail bondsman might even be able to post the bail in-person on your behalf or offer you the option of a transfer bond, if possible. Transfer bonds allow you to post bail locally for a loved one being held in another state. 

Contact a Licensed Bonding Agent

Because of the various jurisdictions and the guidelines by which they govern, it’s important that you find a licensed bail bondsman within the foreign jurisdiction who can either answer the questions for you or help you find someone who can.