How to Keep Things Private When Dealing with a Bail Bondsperson

When you are involved in a legal proceeding, even during the preliminary matters such as a bail hearing, you’ll probably find that your right of privacy has gotten nil. After all, any legal case is a matter of public record, and the courts can reasonably inquire into your personal affairs as long as it’s relevant to the case. Even your financial status is a matter of public record because the courts will determine the amount of your total bail based, in part, on your financial capacity. You don’t set a bail amount that is too low for a person who is well-off, because it won’t have the kind of teeth that would compel the defendant to attend his trial.

Even the fact that you have approached a bail bondsperson will be made of public record because it is one of the ways that a defendant is released on bail. Once your bail bondsman has put up a surety bond on your behalf, the court will note this in your record before granting you temporary release.

Does it seem like there is no right of privacy for any person involved in a criminal proceeding?

One thing you can do is ask your San Diego bail bondsman to keep private the details of your bond. Whether a relative or family member has agreed to become a cosigner on your behalf, or whether you have put up certain properties as security or collateral for your bail, these matters do not necessarily need to be made of public record.

The important thing is that you attend your trial when the bail bondsman in Santa Rosa pays your bail, and not skip bail. If you do this, no further inquiry needs to be made into the details of your bail bond or any other further details of your financial solvency. Unless these matters are relevant to the legal proceedings of the case you are involved in, you have a right to keep these matters private, and to be left alone regarding further inquiry into your personal financial status.

Understanding Privacy Laws in Relation to Bounty Hunters

What’s important to remember about the right to privacy under tort law is that it is a cause of action that can be raised against other private individuals, and that includes your bail bondsman, and any bounty hunters that may be working to bring a fugitive back to a court’s jurisdiction.

A bounty hunter is one who catches defendants who jump bail, and are mainly employed by bail bondsmen. You might wonder what kind of authority bounty hunters have, and whether you have any kind of protection against them.

First, of all, the authority of bounty hunters varies by state. As a general statement, their job is to track down a skip, a person who jumped bail, or a fugitive, to apprehend them, and to bring them back to the court’s jurisdiction. The manner and extent to which bounty hunters are regulated also varies. Some are regulated and licensed by the state, but are mostly unregulated in other states. Some states allow the practice of bounty hunting, while others have enacted laws restricting what bounty hunters can do. As a general rule, what holds are the laws of the local state, or where the possible apprehension might occur. If a fugitive is hiding in a certain state, the laws of that state govern, regardless of what the bounty hunter is capable of doing in their home state.

This also applies to bounty hunters that choose to operate outside of the United States in order to apprehend a fugitive. Not all countries in the world recognize the practice or the legality of bounty hunting, which means that the legal authority of bounty hunters is not recognized, as well.  Bounty hunters can get into a lot of trouble in other countries, and be held liable for kidnapping or other similar criminal and civil charges.

Where bounty hunters can legally operate, however, they can do whatever is considered reasonable to apprehend a fugitive. So, for instance, a bounty hunter can enter the fugitive’s property without a warrant in order to re-arrest him. But this should be based on a personal knowledge that fugitive is actually living there. That means that unless the bounty hunter is aware that the property belongs to the fugitive, and that the fugitive is actually living inside the premises, the right of privacy, and to be protected against trespass and unreasonable intrusion into one’s seclusion, still holds.

On the other hand, the right of a bounty hunter to enter into property to conduct a re-arrest also does not apply if the property belongs to another person, whether it is a relative or a loved one of the fugitive. That means that even by association with a person subject to a criminal proceeding, another private person, even those who might have taken the fugitive in, still retain their right to privacy. That means they can exclude others from their property, and they have the right to be protected against trespass and unreasonable intrusion into their seclusion. If the bounty hunter disregards the privacy rights of other private individuals, they he may be held liable for privacy tort, as well as other criminal or civil charges.

Protect your Privacy against Bail Bondsmen

In dealing with bail bondsmen, and especially when you are involved in a criminal proceeding, it might seem that your right of privacy is non-existent. After all, courts can pretty much inquire into whatever matter they deem may be relevant to the pending case. But bail bondsmen stand on a different footing altogether than agents of the courts.

Bail bondsmen are either private individuals or they belong to private agencies or companies. This means that any agreement or contract you may have with them is purely voluntary on your part. That means that you do not have to agree to a surety bail bonds agreement with them if you do not have to.

By the same token, the right of a bail bondsman to inquire into your private affairs is also limited to whatever you may choose to disclose to them. While any information relevant to the court proceeding is a matter of public record, the bail bondsman only has access to this by virtue of its being a matter of public record. This means that they cannot require you to divulge any other information that is not relevant to the proceedings, or that which you do not wish to disclose.

So, if, for instance, you have already put up a collateral of some real estate for your bail bond, your bail bondsman cannot ask you any further about any other properties you may own, or any other properties you might be willing to put up as collateral. As long as the basic agreement of sufficient collateral is met, a bail bondsman is limited in his inquiries by your right to privacy, or the right to be protected against any further unreasonable intrusion upon your seclusion.

Also remember that this right to be protected against unreasonable intrusion upon your seclusion from your bail bondsman also includes the right to be protected from any similar intrusions from other private individuals, and this includes reporters, journalists, and other members of the media.  Again, while information related to or relevant to any pending criminal cases you may be involved in are a matter of public record, you still retain a measure of privacy over all other information and personal data that is not relevant to the case at hand. If it is not relevant to the case at hand, it cannot be inquired into by the courts, which means that you still retain the right to privacy over these areas of your life, including the right to exclude others, and the right to a reasonable expectation of privacy.

Further and deliberate inquiries into these private matters, whether by media, by your bail bondsman, or by any other private individual, constitutes a tort for which you can seek legal redress against the trespassers. This includes any form of trespass, whether physical or electronic. As long as you have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and another intrudes into your private matters without your consent, the law affords you recourse against the trespasser under tort law, even though you may be currently a defendant in an ongoing criminal proceeding.