Bail Bonds Articles

dwi breath

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When you are pulled over by a police officer in Wilmington as you sit there watching in your rearview mirror as the officer walks up to your car a lot of thing are running through your head. At this point the officer has a reason to pull you over which could be a number of things such as a expired tag, speeding, weaving, etc. Once the officer comes to your car window and you roll the window down he will be observing you for things such as your slurred speech, clarity of your eyes, and smell of alcohol. Once the officer has reason to suspect that you may be intoxicated he may ask you to step out of your car to conduct a field sobriety test. If you do not pass this test, you will probably be asked to give a breath, blood, or urine test.
In North Carolina, you can be charged with DWI for driving any vehicle when your blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, is at or above legal limit OR while you are under the influence of an impairing substance. DWI is usually defined by your BAC:

21 or Older: 0.08%
Commercial drivers: 0.04%
Younger than 21: Any alcohol concentration
Prior DWI: 0.04%

If your test results show that your BAC is above the legal limit, or if you refuse to allow them to test, the officer may arrest you right there.
At this point you should be read your right and then you will be handcuffed and put into the back of a patrol car and taken to police station or sheriffs detention center. Once you arrive at the detention center you will be given the chance to blow into a alko-sensor that will determine your BAC. If you refuse to submit a breath analysis your license could be revoked for one year. Once a blood alcohol level has been determined you will be taken before a magistrate or a judge to determine if you will be given a secured or unsecured bond. If it it determined that you qualify for a unsecured bond you will be released without having to pay any money. If it determined that you are to be placed on a secured bond you will need to pay the full amount of the bond or hire a bail bondsman. Once a bond has been given we hope you will call us at Off The Hook Bail Bonds to help you or send us a bail request from our website.

warrant for arrest 720x321

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We frequently get calls from people that ask, ” what do I do if I think I have a warrant for my arrest?” Well recently most of our surrounding county jails have gone to the policy of not giving out warrant information over the telephone since a lot of the people that find out that they have warrants don’t want to turn themselves in. It is in your best interest to act quickly and get this warrant served on your terms and not get a surprise knock at your door from a police officer.
What we suggest is for you to contact a friend to come with you then call Off The Hook Bail bonds .
Once you call, we will have a friendly bail agent meet with you and have the warrant served and immediately bond you out without you having to worry about putting on those “lovely” county jail outfits.

10 percent off discount sale icon 1

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During the holidays it can be lonely to be without a loved one that may have gotten arrested due to poor judgment. We here at Off the Hook Bail Bonds understand that you want to be with your friends and family over the holidays so we are offering 10% off the bond fee for any bail bond until January 3rd 2016! In order to take advantage of this offer mention this ad to any of our New Hanover, Brunswick, Pender, or Onslow County bail bondsmen when you call!


coming soon

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We are excited to announce that we will soon have a new location in Brunswick County to assist local residents with their bail bonding needs! With the sheriff’s recent decision to make it mandatory for all bail bond companies that wish to be listed inside the jail, they must have a office to be on that list. In a effort to better serve our bail bonding clients that have gotten to know us over the years, we decided to secure a office within a mile of the Brunswick county government complex. When the sale of the property is complete look for our sign to appear off Old Ocean Highway, Bolivia NC.

jail call list

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As of July 1, 2015 the Brunswick County jail is going to remove the current list of bail bonding companies and replace it with a list of bail bonding companies that only have offices in Brunswick county. The purpose of the change is to prevent what is known in the industry as “Trunk Bondsmen”. A “Trunk Bondsman” is a bondsman that travels to different counties working from their car trunk instead of a office. When a person is arrested, the first contact they are allowed to make is from the jail phones. From these phones inmates can call bondsmen from the provided list so that they can start the process needed in order to bail out. If a inmate calls a “Trunk Bondsman” there is a good chance that they will be waiting for hours until that bail bondsman can get to them. In most cases these “Trunk Bondsmen” have their company name added to as many county jail lists as they can in hopes of getting a large bail bond call which can earn them more money. The problem with this is that they usually will not make the trip to get you out of jail if the bond is too small. In fairness to to the inmates I think this is a good policy.

court money

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As a bail bondsman I constantly get calls from people in jail that have missed court here in Wilmington NC. We understand that things happen and people miss court from time to time. But when you miss your court date the second time and wind up back in jail this is a problem. This situation is known as a Bond”C” to bail bondsmen and clerks of the court.
Each time a bail bondsman goes to the jail to bond someone out they have to get a “conditions of release and release order” form from the jailer. This form has been filled out by the magistrate that explains what a person has been charged with, conditions of them being released, court date, and bond amount. The state of North Carolina has added wording to this form that can be checked if it applies which reads, ” This was the defendant’s second or subsequent failure to appear in this case.” This is also known as Bond “C”. When this box is checked the bail bondsman has been given notice that IF they write that bail bond and the defendant does not appear in court for the third time, the bail bondsman MUST pay the full amount of the bail bond! The bail bondsman has no recourse to save the bail bond from forfeiture as he would in normal circumstances. This is why you will you will always get a “No” from a bail bondsman when they learn that you have a Bond “C”.
The moral to the story, don’t miss court! If you do happen to miss court don’t miss it more than once because you just may be staying there until your next court date!

Super Intern

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As an intern working for both Off The Hook Bail Bonds and Bonds by Terri I have learned a lot about what the life of a bondsman is. When I first started this internship I came in only knowing that a bondsman gets someone out of jail until their court date comes around and the bondsman is responsible for the entire bond if the defendant doesn’t show up. I didn’t realize however, what their day to day life consists of. It is not a 9-5 position; it’s 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. Being a bondsman is sporadic, you can’t set a schedule on when you’ll be in the office because you never know when you’re going to get a call and have to go to the jail. Once at the jail a bail bondsman will try to get as much information as possible from the client along with a percentage of the posted bond, if the bond is high the bondsman will also require some collateral. With each client that a bondsman takes in there is a good amount of paper work to follow between intake forms, insurance papers, and keeping track of payments. Between the time that a client is out on bond and the set court date the bondsman will keep in contact to ensure the client will indeed show up for court. If the client doesn’t appear then the bondsman is responsible for the entire amount of the bond if they are unable to produce the defendant. In this case the bondsman would use various methods to track down the client and apprehend them. Such as, websites like Slammer Pics which allows bondsman’s to post mugshots of clients that are on the run and makes finding them easier using different avenues of social media as well as rewards to find them. Bail bondsman will also team up with private investigators to track down people.

contract image

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Like with most services everyone likes to get a bargain. When it comes to bail bonds in Wilmington NC some bail bondsmen will quote you a ridiculously low amount of money to do a bail bond for you. Be very careful going with these companies, what they are doing is telling you this just to get you away from legitimate companies. In the contract that you sign with any bail bondsmen it states seven rules you must abide by in order to remain on bond. The second rule states that they have the right to arrest you and return you to jail without returning your money if you do not pay money owed on your bond premium. What this means to you is that for whatever reason you can’t pay on the agreed day and time, you will probably be going back to jail! Last year in New Hanover county alone there were 214 people brought back to jail by bail bondsmen for nonpayment. Don’t deal with a shady bail bondsman, make sure you ask questions and get your agreement in writing! A true good deal is only as good as how you benefit from it.

bait and switch

FAQ e1424380966809

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When people need to get a friend or loved one out of jail it is usually at a time when you are not prepared for this news. These days most people have a smartphone or a computer where they go to find a bail bondsman instead of a phone book. Many people have a preconceived notion as to what a bail bondsman is going to look and act like based on tv shows that they have seen. Those tv shows make for good entertainment but when you actually need a bail bonding company to help you get someone out of jail there are a couple of things you should look for when considering one.
How long have they been in business? This is your first indication that a bail bonding company is credible. What do other people think of this bail bond company? You can read reviews from other people that have used a particular bail bonding company. Does that bail bondsman give you helpful advice to your particular situation or do you feel like they are just trying get your business? A bail bondsman can’t give you legal advice but they should be able to assist you with any information pertaining to your case such as court dates, location, and legal council. Does this bail bonding company have a physical office that you can come to if you have further questions? Many bail bondsmen work out of their homes and don’t want their clients coming there so what do you do? And lastly, does this bail bonding company have a website that contains useful information and online forms that makes the bail bonding process convenient? Many people that need a bail bondsman’s assistance cant come to them to fill out paperwork if they are far away. A bail bonding company today should keep up with technology just as other professions have to improve convenience for the customer.
OTH outside office

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For several years Securus has been the collect call billing company for the Wilmington, Burgaw, and Bolivia jails.  A lot of people are familiar with that recorded call that says ” This is a collect call from county jail to accept charges press one.”   At a rate of $15 every time you accept a call, it won’t take long to have a huge phone bill.  This may not seem like a big deal to most people but it could have effect on you if you live in Pender or Brunswick counties and know someone that has ever ended up in jail.  New Hanover county jail is the only jail that gives each bail bonding company one phone number that can receive free calls from inmates.  A representative for the New Hanover County Jail explained why this makes sense, ” We want these people out of the jail to relieve the taxpayer from paying these peoples living expenses .”  By charging bail bondsmen the phone billing fees from Securus you could imagine what our phone bills might look like. The jails spend more money housing people that could have bonded out with their own money and let the bail bondsman assume the liability to make sure they appear in court.

It seems to me that if Brunswick and Pender County jails want to save tax payer money and reduce over crowded jails, they could follow New Hanover jail and allow bail bonding companies one free number so inmates can call and have a better chance of bonding out.  Maybe this is a story topic for the local news?  If you have any input on this topic we would like to hear from you!