Can You Use a Car Title to Bail Someone Out of Jail?

A depiction of bail

Everyone deserves a second chance in life.

If a loved one or friend has been arrested and you’re wondering how to bail someone out of jail when you have no money, it’s true that there are other ways to bail someone out of jail without immediate access to funds. In fact, you probably already own and have access to quite a few things that can help you meet the demands of that bail.

Generally, it’s best to pay the bail bond outright with cash. That’ll mean the least amount of headaches and a condensed timeline for you and your loved one. But what if the banks are closed or you don’t have that kind of money on hand? Bail bond collateral can help you meet the need by putting up a valuable asset of yours, such as your car.

Let’s take a further look at how you can use a car title to bail someone out of jail.

Can You Put Your Car up for a Bail Bond?

While you can’t always put up a car for a bail bond, you can use a car for bail bonds financing if you fit the following requirements:

  1. First, you must be the owner of the car and you must have the title to the car in hand. (That means you can’t still owe money on a loan for the vehicle or be making payments on the vehicle.)
  2. The car itself must run and be in good shape, and it must also be registered and insured.
  3. Finally, the value of the car must exceed the amount needed for the bail bond.

If any of those factors are not true, you won’t be able to use your car to obtain a loan or to pay off the bail bond. In most instances, classic cars, high-end cars, or late-model cars that have recently been paid off are the best options for paying off a bail bond, though any car that meets the criteria can be considered.

Paying With a Pink Slip

For those that want to pay a bail bond with a “pink slip” (otherwise known as a deed), keep in mind that a pink slip isn’t all you’ll need when it comes to bailing someone out of jail. It’s great in a pinch if banks are closed or as a temporary form of collateral, but bail bondsmen don’t typically want to store cars on their lots so that pink slip is more like a stopgap until you can obtain a real loan to cover that bond. The pink slip buys you time to get your affairs in order and to get your loved one out of jail, but it’s better to obtain an actual loan than to put your car up for bail. After all, if a court appearance is missed, you could end up forfeiting your vehicle itself.

While you can use a car title to bail someone out of jail, bail bond companies aren’t really built to hold your property for the entirety of the bail term. A bank, pawnshop, or other short-term lender may be a better option, though if you don’t have access to a line of credit or other collateral you may be left with no choice but to put up your vehicle as collateral – in which case, carefully consider your available options. If your car is a higher value than the bond itself, it may be worth selling for cash – which you can use to pay off the bond in its entirety. Remember, if you put your car up for a bond and the court appearances aren’t fulfilled, you will lose the vehicle and will be unable to regain the difference in value.

Other ways to pay that bail bond include:

  • cash in full (legally known as a cash bond)
  • credit cards – though double-check your interest rates
  • real estate deeds
  • other valuable assets such as jewelry and pawnable items 

If you’re in a rush, remember that cash sales are bound to take a long time so strongly consider working directly with a bail company. When in doubt, simply reach out to your local bail bondsman for options tailored to your needs. They’ll help walk you through each step so that you can bring your loved one back home… sooner, rather than later. 

Here at My Bail Hotline, we’re here for you and your family during this trying time. Get professional help from our many locations in California or contact us to get started on your case.

Can You Go to Jail for Not Paying Bail Bonds in California?

A depiction of bail bonds including cash, a gavel, and cuffs

While most people know what bail is and how it can help you get out of jail until a court appearance, there’s still a lot of confusion as to how bail works, who qualifies for it, and how you can make bail if you or a loved one ends up in jail. Furthermore, bail amounts can be reduced or raised for different reasons (or prohibited entirely) so it’s important to know your rights.

How Bail Works

In the state of California, each county has a different bail schedule for different offenses. Once you’re arrested, bail will be determined by either the schedule or a bail bondsman, though attorneys or judges may weigh in. For minor offenses, there may be reasons for no bail, but that depends on the offense and the circumstances of the crime. Sometimes, people are released immediately after booking with no bail at all.

However, if your offense is on the bail schedule, bail will have to be paid if you want to spend time outside of jail prior to your court appearances. If you’re wondering if you can bail yourself out of jail, the answer is yes, as long as you have the funds and the means to do so. The same goes for if you have a family member or friend that will put up the bail – you’ll be able to walk away until your arraignment and other hearings.

How Long Do You Stay in Jail if You Can’t Make Bail?

If you can’t make bail, you’ll be stuck in jail until your court appearances start. Sometimes that can be a short period, but it could also take weeks or months, particularly during overly busy and challenging times. If you take out a bail bond in California, you may be interested in how to get out of paying a bail bond, but then you’ll soon be headed back to jail.

That’s because you can go to jail for not paying bail bonds in California. Or, rather, if you can’t afford to bail yourself out, the law says you should be held in jail until your arraignment. If you don’t have enough money and can’t make the bail payment in full, a bail bond company may be able to help by putting up most of the money while you put up cash, assets, or other collateral that the bail bond company can use to initiate the proceedings to get you out on bail. Be careful, though, and make sure to do your research. Some companies will charge high fees with a hidden catch. 

Things that will affect your bail total include:

  • if anyone was injured
  • the seriousness of the offense
  • whether threats, weapons, or drugs were involved
  • whether you’re employed or have community connections
  • your criminal history &
  • whether you’re likely to appear for your hearings

Getting Out on Bail

For most people, the number one concern is getting out on bail as soon as possible after a recent arrest. That can mean the same day or within a couple of days, but it’s all better than waiting weeks or months for your arraignment and other court appointments to start (especially when you feel unsafe in jail). Non-serious offenders are often released without bail as soon as they’re booked, but a serious crime will have contingencies attached to your freedom. 

While you can go to jail for not paying bail bonds in California, you can also end up back in jail if you don’t abide by the conditions of your bail. Sometimes, conditions are used to reduce the amount of bail, such as remaining under house arrest, surrendering a passport or driver’s license, and even restrictions on travel – like not being allowed to leave the state. 

Posting bail is often relatively simple as long as you have the cash. However, if the large amount is giving you pause and you can obtain about 10 percent in cash or collateral, working with a bail bondsman can provide a way forward. Bail bonds in California only require you to put up 10 percent or less of the total, meaning that a $50,000 bond can be bought for $5,000 or less.

To get professional help within minutes, contact the bail experts at My Bail Hotline. We’re here throughout California to help you with any bail issue, and offer flexible payment plans at affordable rates. Contact us today!

Leaving the County While on Bail: What You Can and Can’t Do

A depiction of the bail bond system

If you or a loved one has been recently arrested and subsequently released on bail, it can be a worrisome time. After all, being stuck in jail is no way to spend the holidays or any other time of year – and worrying about upcoming court dates can be a burden weighing on anyone’s shoulders. A bail bondsman can help get you or your loved one out of jail, but what about what happens after you go home? What are your rights? Can you leave the county while on bail? Or what about other travel restrictions while you’re out on bail?  Continue reading

Bail Hotline Bail Bonds Builds and Donates 35 Bikes to Miracle on Main Street

BHL donates 35 bikes to miracle on main street

Co-workers from across the state participated in sales training and teambuilding exercises that cumulate in several teams building the bikes for kids in need.

Riverside, CA  Miracle on Main Street, an annual toy drive and health fair in Downtown Riverside, will receive about 35 bicycles from Bail Hotline Bail Bonds. “Each year our event helps more and more kids, this year we hope to give away 1000 toys for kids in need.  These bikes will sure put smiles on a lot of kids’ faces!” explained Michael Lopez, one of the events founders.

Bail Hotline Bail Bonds combined sales training with the bicycle giveaway.  “After an intensive sales workshop, our bail agents form teams, build the bikes and role play a sales scenario demonstrating the training they just learned.  It is a great team building exercise, and the bikes are used for a great cause,” remarked Marco McGuire, VP of Bail Hotline.

About Miracle on Main Street Riverside:

A miracle is returning to Riverside’s Main Street on December 13, 2015! For the third year in a row, downtown Riverside businesses are spearheading the Miracle on Main Street: Toy Drive and Health Fair to spread holiday cheer and provide much needed resources to local families in need.

Last year’s event provided toys, health screenings, and a day of fun to nearly 800 families. This year, thanks to new partnerships with Riverside Downtown Partnership (RDP), the event is poised to reach nearly 1,000 local children.

All donations made to the event are tax-deductible. Donations can be made to Riverside Community Health Foundation Tax ID Number: 23-7276444


Bail Hotline Bail bonds is the fastest growing bail bonds company in California, with 32 offices across the state in cities like Riverside, Bakersfield and more, and a staff of more than 300 employees. The company offers a number of free resources for families seeking to get their loved ones released from jail, including an Inmate Information Hotline and a Bail Information Center. The company is committed to offering help and integrity to families during their time of need.

Alternative Collateral for Bail Bonds


The easiest way to bail someone out of jail is with cash, though this doesn’t always work and leads us to the topic of discussion: bail bond collateral. In most cases, a surety bond is the way to go when bailing someone out of jail. A surety bond is when you pay 10 percent of the bond amount to the bond agency (also called a “premium”) and the agency’s insurance company backs the rest. When you buy a surety bond, you also have to have enough collateral to make up for the other 90 percent of the bond in case the accused skips out on a court date.

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The Importance of Honoring a Bail Bond


Bail bonds and the prohibition against being held without excessive bail is one our Fundamental Constitutional Rights, and something we need to take seriously. There are many different aspects to bail, today we will take you through the consequences of “failing to appear”, “FTA”, “breaking a bond” or missing a court date.
There are two primary reasons for honoring a bail bond. It is important for both the co-signer (or Indemnitor) and the defendant to make sure to follow through on any restrictions, requirements, prerequisites, and obligations of signing a bail bond. By following these “rules,” per se, you can be assured that there will be no unexpected or unnecessary financial or criminal consequences (for the accused) of bailing someone out of jail.

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