JACKSON, MISS– If you’ve ever need a bailout from the lockup, you’ve called a bail bondsmen.
But state insurance commissioner Mike Chaney tells Y’all Politics that in the past, there have been agents who are accused of less-than-legal collection measures.
“Lately here in Mississippi some of those bad apples have caused some major problems. In addition to outright fraud, we have had agents accused of forcing people into prostitution, human trafficking, sexual extortion, kidnapping and armed robbery.”
Chaney says that while the majority of bondsmen are straight laced, it gives the profession as a whole a bad reputation across the state.
Chaney proposes new legislation that would eradicate these issues. The first, being an electronic registry that would require all bondsmen to sign up with statewide. Secondly, a database would hold every current bond issued.
“Quite simply, in Mississippi, we have never required bail agents to carry enough collateral to cover the amount of bonds written,” Chaney says in an op-ed to Y’all Politics, ” Currently, it is possible to write an unlimited amount of bail bonds with a security deposit of only $30,000. It is very easy for a bail bondsman to get over-extended with that small amount of security.”
“So in the legislation we attempt to rectify this by implementing a sliding scale for security required. Quite simply, bail bondsmen will be required to up the security and collateral based upon the amount of bonds they write, with certain modifications.”
Chaney says even though he’s asking for new regulations, this new legislation could bring improvements without causing too much of a government overreach.
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