Assets Accepted As Collateral for Bail Bonds

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Let's say you or a loved one has been arrested for something that requires a fairly large amount of bail. But neither you nor your family members have enough cash to give the bail bond agent in Denver County for the surety bond (typically 10% of the full bail amount). What are you supposed to do? Fortunately, most bonding companies will accept collateral in lieu of cash. But what sort of assets can be used for bail? Below we'll look at seven of them.

Types of Collateral to Use for Bail

If you or a loved one is stuck behind bars because you don't have enough cash to secure bail, fear not. Most bonding agents will also accept collateral to satisfy the bond requirements. But what type of collateral are they looking for? Here are seven assets commonly used to secure bail.

Real estate

If you or a loved one owns a condo or home or another type of real estate it can be used as collateral for bail. Because real estate these days is so valuable you will be able to cover just about any bail requirement with a single residential home or condo, or even a vacant lot if you or your loved one owns it. Just remember that when you use real estate as collateral for bail the state will put a lien on the property for the amount used to secure the bond, typically 10% of the total bail amount.


Ford Focus hatchback in gray outside commercial building

People use cars to secure bail all the time. If you have a late model car, especially a high-end late model car, chances are excellent that it will be worth enough to cover your contribution to the bail bond. With the exception of certain violent crimes and drug offenses (such as trafficking) bail amounts are usually pretty modest. And the fact that you only have to come up with 10% of the total means that any late model car in good shape should work. Note: if you try to pay the bail yourself using a car as collateral for the full amount the court will not accept it. You will need to work with a bondsman.

Precious metals

Long before there was paper money precious metals were the coin of the realm. Indeed, in times of economic uncertainty people still flock to precious metals, mainly gold, as a safe haven. If you have gold bars or gold coins sitting in a safe at home they can be used as collateral to secure the bail bond. Not every bail bond company will accept gold or silver as collateral. But some will. So if you have some it's worth asking if the bondsman will accept it. Remember, as long as the judicial process results in a not-guilty verdict your gold will be returned to you.


People tend to forget about stocks when contemplating assets they can use as bail collateral, but they shouldn't. Consider this: as of this writing a single share of Microsoft is worth around $250. Of course, not all shares of stock are worth that much, but we trust you get the point. If you own stock whose value stretches into 4-figures or more there's a pretty good chance it can be used to secure the release of yourself or your loved one.


There are some 350 million privately owned legal firearms in the US. If you live in Jefferson County, Golden or elsewhere in Colorado there's a good chance one or more of them belong to you. Second amendment debates aside, the fact is that firearms tend to hold their value pretty well over time. As a result, they have the potential to make the difference between being released on bail and sitting in a cell for a protracted period of time.


Not every bondsman will accept jewelry as collateral mostly because it can be difficult to determine which piece of jewelry is the real thing and which is a high-quality fake. But if you bought high-end jewelry from a reputable jeweler and still have the receipt that might convince the bondsman to take a chance. Otherwise, you will likely need to have the jewelry appraised by a professional before the bonding company will accept it as collateral. If you are the one in jail, have a family member bring your jewelry to a professional to be appraised.

Credit card

Blue credit card in hand of man with blue t-shirt

Some courts in Colorado will allow a defendant to use a credit card to secure bail. To do so you will need to make sure you have enough available credit to cover the 10% the bail bond company will require for a surety bond. You will also need to turn over the security code for the card to the bondsman and, if your card is accepted the transaction will be treated as a cash advance with a fairly high transaction fee. Still, if you have a Gold Card in your pocket with a low balance you might want to give it a try if you don't have the requisite cash to secure bail.

Final Thoughts From Our Bail Agents

While not every bail bond agent or every court in Colorado will accept all of the above collateral options, there is a good chance you will find one who will accept one or more of your current assets. If you or a loved one is in need of bail, contact Tayler Made at (303) 623-0399.

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Tayler Made Bail Bonding is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

(303) 623-0399
3595 South Teller Street
Suite 300A
Lakewood, CO 80235