Understanding bail insurance and choosing the right company when you open your bail agency is extremely important. There are many companies offering bail surety, and choosing the right one for your agency is essential. Today, we’ll discuss what bail insurance is, why you need it, and how to choose the right one.
What is Bail Insurance?
As a bail agent, when you write a bond, you are telling the court you have the assets to cover the entire bond amount should the defendant forfeit. This is a large financial risk, which is where bail bond insurance companies come in: If a bail agency wishes to post more and more bonds and grow their business, they’ll need to work with a bail bond insurance company to back them.
Even in situations where an agency can underwrite themselves, it is wise to have bail insurance. This is for security, the ability to grow your agency and write more bonds, and for the additional benefits partnering with a bail bond insurance company provides. Bail bond insurance companies and agencies work together to create a bail system that allows people charged with a crime to be released as they await their trial.
How to Choose the Right Bail Bond Insurance Company
Choosing the right bail bond insurance company may seem daunting, but there are many great options out there, and a few specific factors to consider:
1. Contract Rate
This is essentially how much will you be paying – and does it make sense for your business and growth. When considering pricing, it is important to weigh all the benefits. In some cases, less expensive insurance provides less coverage or less support and resources. Another thing to consider is your build-up-fund (or BUF), which is essentially a savings account kept by the surety company. The more funds you have in this account, the lower your contract rate will be. When choosing a bail bond insurance company, discuss their BUF options, and how it will impact your rate. A typically contract rate is a 2% charge per $1,000 for every bond you write. Contract rates vary, however, much like car insurance. The factors that impact your rate are how many years you have in the industry, how much supervision you need, your agency’s forfeiture rate, etc.
2. Services and Resources
Bail bond insurance companies can provide helpful resources and services which will help you as you run and grow your agency. Look for a company that provides benefits such as credit checks, recovery assistance, people and property searches, the ability to transfer bond jurisdiction, and 24/7 large bond approvals. Working with a company that doesn’t hold you back is extremely helpful and will make your day-to-day much less complicated.
You want to choose a bail agency that has a good track record, and who has been around for a while. You should be able to find good reviews, and see that they care about taking care of customers.
A lot happens in the bail industry: it’s constantly changing, and it’s important to stay up-to-date about current laws and upcoming legislation. Additionally, many questions pop up in the day-to-day operations of an agency. Having a responsive bail bond insurance company that has your back and can answer questions is much like having a partner. Choose a company that offers 24/7 service and will answer your support questions quickly and effectively.
Top Bail Bond Insurance Companies
Where can you get started when looking for bail bond insurance companies? Here are a few companies to get you started. Because your contract rate and needs will be unique, it is wise to contact each one to get the best rate and services to meet your needs:
- AIA Insurance
- Banker’s Insurance
- Bail USA
- Financial Casualty & Surety
- Lexington National
- American Surety Company
Additionally, you can find a list of companies through the Bureau of Fiscal Service, as well as the National Association of Surety Bond Producers.
Choose a Bail Bond Insurance Company and Get Started
We hope you’ve found this guide helpful as you choose a bail bond insurance company. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out and we’ll get you in touch with other agencies with similar demographics and business needs to help you determine the best surety company for you!s