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Bounty Hunter State Requirements.

Alabama  to  Wyoming; plus  Canada .

 

ALABAMA

Bounty Hunters are called Professional Bondsmen or Agents of Professional Bondsmen.

A Bail Bondsman can give authority to an agent to apprehend a fugitive by endorsing a certified copy of the bond and the act to apprehend.  The Bondsman or his agent can pursue the fugitive anywhere in the state.  Alabama does not have any special regulations in regards to bounty hunting.  A licensed private investigator can act in the capacity of a bounty hunter.
ALASKA

The main requirement to become a bounty hunter in Alaska is to obtain a bail bond limited producer license.

Alaska's requirements are not high to become a bounty hunter, since a private citizen is allowed to make arrests.  Bail Recovery Agents and residents can both arrest a fugitive and turn them over to the police officials for a fee.  It is recommended to get bounty hunter training.

ARIZONA

Arizona is very concerned about bounty hunters and has more regulations than some of the other states.

To work as a Bail Recovery Agent you are required to work for a licensed bail bondsman.  You must complete 20 hours of state approved training.  You cannot have a felony conviction or have been convicted of a crime with a weapon.  Arizona does require a state bail recovery license.  There are restrictions on what you can wear and display, so people know you are only a bail enforcement agent and not law enforcement.  You need to contact the licensing authorities and study all regulations.

ARKANSAS

You cannot represent yourself as a bounty hunter in Arkansas.  To be a bail enforcement officer in this state you have to be either a law enforcement officer, a licensed private investigator or a licensed bondsman from a bond-issuing state.

To act as a fugitive recovery agent in Arkansas you must be a licensed bondsman or a private investigator; or be employed under the licensing terms of either profession.

CALIFORNIA

California requires Bail Enforcement Agents to take a state test, complete state approved training and obtain a license.  The state does have a specific bounty hunter license, you are called a Bail Fugitive Recovery Agent or Bail Enforcement Agent.  You may track down a bail fugitive if you have written permission from a licensed bail bondsman, or be employed by a licensed bail bondsman.

The California Bail Agents Association can be a world of information and assist you in obtaining your license.  You must be at lease 18 years old, have no felony conviction, be a U.S. citizen and a California resident.  After training you can apply for your license with the California Department of Insurance.  You will need to pass an exam with a passing score of 70%.  You are required to work closely with law enforcement.  Any uniform you wear cannot give the idea that you are a state approved law officer.  The training consist of a 40 hour Police Officer Standard Training - power of arrest course and a 20 hour Department of Insurance approved licensing bail education course.

COLORADO

Colorado requires all Bail Recovery Agents to be licensed and complete a bail recovery training course.

Colorado is not as tough as California or Arizona, but they do require a background check and no felony convictions.  The license is issued by the Department of Regulatory Agencies, through the Insurance Division.  Contact that division for more information.

CONNECTICUT

The state of Connecticut monitors Bail Enforcement Agents.  They require formal training, background checks and a state license, issued by The Department of Public Safety.

The state licensing board makes sure that bail enforcement agents are well qualified and know all the laws that pertain to them.  There are requirements on your uniform and how you perform your duties.  You are also required to work with law enforcement when going after a fugitive.
DELAWARE

The Department of Safety is responsible for the activity of Bail Enforcement Agents.  You must complete state approved training and obtain a state license.

The minimum age is 21 years old with no felony convictions.  There are specific requirements for your uniform and in the way you capture a fugitive.  You will also have to work closely with law enforcement.

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

Bounty hunting in the district does not occur very often, so there are very few requirements.

The only requirements are that you become a bondsman.  To engage in the bonding business requires a background check and you need to obtain a license.
FLORIDA

You cannot call yourself a Bounty Hunter in this state (by state law).  You are either a bail bondsman or a surety agent.  You are required to work with the courts and obtain their permission before going after a fugitive.

You have to be 18 years old, be a resident of Florida, go through a tough background check, pass a state test and obtain a state surety license.  There is also continuing education every 2 years.  Due to the high crime rate in south Florida, there seems to be a demand for licensed surety agents.

GEORGIA

In Georgia, bounty hunters are called Fugitive Recovery Agents and work very closely with law enforcement. Agents are regulated by the Georgia General Assembly.

To become an agent in Georgia you must complete state approved training, obtain a state license and be employed by an established bondsman.  The Georgia Association of Professional Bondsmen can offer a lot of information.

HAWAII

The only requirement is to be over the age of 18 years old.  There is no requirement for training or a license to be a Bounty Hunter.

You are required to work under a contract with a licensed bondsman, but realize they only hire the best and only the people they trust.  Presently the legal system is trying to pass laws that will require training and licenses for bounty hunters.  The present fugitive recovery system works because the bail bondsmen are very careful who they hire.  Therefore, it is very difficult for a rookie to find work as an agent.  The best way to join this industry is to get hired by a group of established bounty hunters.

IDAHO

Idaho does not require a license or training to operate as a Bounty Hunter.

You are required to be a resident of the state and follow the statutes that cover bail arrests and bond insurance.  Established bail bondsmen only hire agents they know and treust; plus have a successful record.  This is a tough state to break into the business; unless you are connected.  If you have a strong resume, with past experience, then this could open some doors.  Recommend you talk with an experienced bondsman to gain more information.

ILLINOIS

Forget about being a bounty hunter in Illinois.  Bail bond firms are not allowed to operate in the state.  The industry is totally controlled by the state and bounty hunting is banned.

People wanting out of jail on bond receive the bail bond from the state.  In fact, bounty hunters from other states cannot operate in Illinois.  Agents from another state can be charged with kidnapping if they try to apprehend a fugitive they have chased into the state.  A few of the regulators have attempted to allow bonding firms back into the state, but this has failed.

INDIANA

The state of Indiana requires Fugitive Recovery Agents to be licensed, pass a state test and be a resident.  All agents are governed by the Department of Insurance.

The license is called a Bail Agent's License.  You must be 18 years old and not have a felony conviction.  You are also required to have knowledge of the bail bond business.

IOWA

Bounty hunters are called Bail Enforcement Agents.  They must be 18 years old, obtain a state license, have no prior convictions and pass a background check.

You are required to complete state approved training before the license will be issued.  As an agent you must work closely with law enforcement.  There is also a requirement to prove your financial stability.  The Department of Public Safety can offer you more information.

KANSAS

In the past Kansas had some tough laws for bail bond firms and the fugitive recovery business.  Those laws have been repealed and now there are no specific laws that apply to bounty hunters.

Since there is no license requirement, it means that anyone can become a bounty hunter.  It is recommended that you do receive professional training, but the field is wide open.  Realize that bonding firms only hire the best agents with proven records, but there are still opportunities, if you can get hired.  As an agent you will have to notify law enforcement prior to an arrest.  You are not allowed to have a past felony conviction within the past 10 years.  The Kansas Bail Association is trying to get stronger legislation to regulate bounty hunters.

KENTUCKY

Kentucky has banned bail bond firms and bounty hunters.  Bounty hunting is illegal in the state.

The police and state law enforcement are the only people who can make bail fugitive arrests.

LOUISIANA

Louisiana requires Fugitive Recovery Agents to be licensed and take the state approved training.

No license will be issued if you have a felony conviction.  You must work for 6 months with an existing licensed agent before your license is issued.  The Louisiana Department of Insurance issues the license and can provide more information.

MAINE

There is no license requirement for bounty hunters.  The bounty hunter works for a licensed surety company that issues the bail bond.

Realize that the state of Maine has the lowest crime rate in the nation.  They also have the lowest number of people in jail.  This all equals very few requirements for bounty hunters and very few job openings.  It would be best to become a bounty hunter in any of the adjoining states.  Career opportunities are very slim for bounty hunters in Maine.

MARYLAND

Only requirement is that you are employed by a licensed Bail Agent.

Bail Agents (bondsmen) have very strict state laws they must follow, so these firms are very careful who they hire as bounty hunters.  There is state legislation pending to regulate bounty hunters.  The best recommendation is to learn the bail bond business.  Talk to some of the larger bail agent firms to learn more about the business.

MASSACHUSETTS

There is no license or training requirement for bounty hunters.  The only requirement is to observe state laws and register with the Superior Court.

Register with the court then contact a bail bond company.  Learn the state bail bond laws.  Crime was on the rise in Massachusetts, even though they are one of the lower crime states in the nation.

MICHIGAN

Michigan does not require a license or training to be a bounty hunter.

You do need to work with a bail bond company.  The state gives you arrest authority, but local law enforcement must be notified when you plan to arrest a fugitive.  In some cases they will assist you in the arrest.  Due to the facvt that some of the cities have the highest crime rate, there is a demand for bounty hunters.  The job is on the dangerous side in these high crime areas, so make sure you receive the best training possible.

MINNESOTA

There is no license or training required to be a bounty hunter.

You must be employed by a bail bond company.  The bonding company is going to require you to have training and a past history of fugitive recovery.  This is a hard state for a rookie to become a bounty hunter.  Talk to a bonding company to see if you can offer some free service to work for them and learn.

MISSISSIPPI

To be a Bail Enforcement Agent in Mississippi you need to be 21 years old and be a resident of the state for one year.  You need to complete a state approved training course offered by the Professional Bail Agents Association.

Once you complete the training you can apply for a state license from The Department of Insurance.  Past felony convictions are not allowed and you must be employed by a licensed bonding company.  There arer state regulations for bounty hunters and you need to learn these regulations.

MISSOURI

Fugitive Recovery Agents must obtain a license issued by The Department of Insurance.

There is extensive training, you must be 21 years old and a resident of the state.  You must have a high school diploma or GED.  No felony convictions and you must work with a licensed bonding company.  There is a full background check.  Contact The Department of Insurance for more details.

MONTANA

This is probably the easiest state to find work as a bounty hunter.  There is no specific state legislation for Fugity Recovery Agents.  No license or training requirements.

All you have to do is get a job with a licensed bail bond company and abide by the insurance laws of the state.  A past criminal record does not seem to be a problem in Montana, as long as it is not recent.  Contact a licensed bail bondsman or surety insurance firm for employment and more information.

NEBRASKA

Bounty hunting is not governed by any specific state laws.  You must follow the common laws of the state. 

The first thing to do is to be employed by a bonding company.  Since there is no license required a past minor criminal record would be accepted.  Contact a licensed insurance company, that issues surety bonds, for more information.
 
NEVADA

Nevada is one of the tough states to become a Bail Enforcement Agent.  You must be 21 years old, have a high school diploma, complete extensive training and pass a very difficult test.  It can take up to 9 months to get your license.

The training includes the use of firearms.  The Nevada Division of Insurance issues the license and can offer more information.  There is a background check and a drug test.  The state only wants the best qualified people to be Bail Enforcement Agents.  If you have a criminal history of convictions, forget about being a bounty hunter in Nevada.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

As a bounty hunter in New Hampshire, you are a representative of the state.  There is state law that applies directly to Recovery Agents.  You are required to complete state training, be certified and obtain a license.  You must also provide liability insurance on yourself.

You work as a Recovery Agent representative of the state.  You must notify authorities prior to a fugitive search.  Contact The Secretary of State office for more information.

NEW JERSEY

New Jersey requires bounty hunters to be a minimum of 25 years old.  You must have 5 years experience as a private investigator or law enforcement officer.  If you have 5 years as a proven bounty hunter, that experience would be accepted.  New Jersey wants the best of the best and there is nothing here for a rookie.

A license is required, a tough back ground check, criminal history check and drug test.  There is extensive training and bounty hunters in New Jersey are probably the best in the nation.  Bounty Hunters are regulated by the State Police and if you have a criminal record, forget about being a bounty hunter.  The state Department of Law and Public Service can offer you more information.

NEW MEXICO

There are no specific laws governing bounty hunters.  You do need to learn the state laws of bail enforcement.  You must work with a licensed bail bondsman.

There is required training along with 30-hours of on-the-job training with a licensed bondsman.  Upon training completion, you can then apply for your license, but still must work with a bail bondsman.
 
NEW YORK

Rookies can forget about becoming bounty hunters in New York.  You are required to have three years experience as a police officer or a licensed private investigator.

You will need to contract with a licensed bail bondsman.  A Bail Enforcement license is required along with passing the bail enforcement course.  There is a background check and criminal history check.  New York only wants the best people with past law enforcement experience.

NORTH CAROLINA

In North Carolina you work for and are sponsored by a licensed bail bondsman.  There is 20 hours of bail enforcement training, plus you are required to obtain a state license.

The minimum age is 18 years old.  You must be a resident of the state and have no felony convictions.  You must know how bail enforcement operates and have experience in bail enforcement duties.  There is a criminal and background check.  You answer completely to your bondsman and cannot operate as an independent bounty hunter.

NORTH DAKOTA

The minimum age is 18 years old.  There is no license requirement, but you have to be employed by a licensed bail bondsman.

No training is required, but there is a background check and you must be a resident of the state.  Contact a licensed bail bondsman to learn more.

OHIO

To be a bounty hunter in Ohio you must become a surety bail agent.  This requires completion of state training.

The minimum age is 18 years old.  You must pass a state exam and complete a licensing certificate program.  Contact a bail surety company to obtain more information.

OKLAHOMA

There is no license requirement, but you must be employed by a licensed bail bondsman.

To be an agent of a bail bondsman you will need to attend training, be 21 years old, have a clean criminal record and be a high school graduate.  You must be a resident of the state.  Contact a licensed bail bondsman for more details.

OREGON

Oregon does not allow commercial bail enforcement and does not allow bounty hunters in the state.

State and local law enforcement take care of all bail enforcement.
PENNSYLVANIA

Pennsylvania does not have a lot of laws affecting Fugitive Recovery Agents.  There is no license requirement.  You will need to provide personal information on an application and take weapons training that is state approved.

Expect a background check and you must be at least 18 years old.  The state does require a physical exam and a psychological profile test.  You will work directly with bail bond firms, so it is recommended you contact one of the larger firms for more information.

RHODE ISLAND

Rhode Island does not require a license for Fugitive Recovery Agents.  You are required to obey the common laws of the state.

You must find employment with a licensed bail bondsman or bail surety firm.  It is a good idea to learn the state laws of bail enforcement and contact a bonding company for more information.
SOUTH CAROLINA

South Carolina requires bounty hunters to complete approved training, take a state exam and obtain a license.

You must be 18 years old, be a resident and have no felony offences.  The license is issued by the South Carolina Department of Insurance and can provide you with more information.  You will need to connect with a bail bond company and they will have to endorse you and inform the state that you will be working for them.  The South Carolina Bail Agents Association can also provide you a lot of information.

SOUTH DAKOTA

South Dakota requires a minimum age of 21 years old to be a bounty hunter.  You must be a resident of the state and have no felony convictions.  They do require you to obtain a state issued license.

The license is issued by the South Dakota Division of Insurance.  You will need to gain knowledge about the state bail bonding laws.  It is best to approach a licensed bonding company to gain knowledge of the business and make contact for possible future employment.  The state has a written exam and training is highly recommended.

TENNESSEE

Tennessee does not have any specific regulations for bounty hunters.  You are required to complete state approved training and you must apply for certification.

You cannot have a felony conviction on your record and will have to be employed by a licensed bail bond company.  The Tennessee Association of Professional Bail Agents can provide more information.

TEXAS

You cannot be a bounty hunter that operates on your own in the state of Texas.  This state has strict laws that control the arrest of a bail bond fugitive.

The only person that become a bounty hunter in Texas is a licensed private investigator, a law enforcement official or a state commissioned security officer.  Bail bond firms can only work with these people.  The state requires these people to obtain a state license to perform as a bounty hunter.

UTAH

Utah has a lot of laws that regulate a bounty hunter.  You must complete required training, gain experience in the field and obtain a state license.

The state would prefer that bounty hunters gained experience as a law enforcement officer.  You must have a letter stating that a bail bondsman will hire you upon receiving your license.  There are three different levels of bounty hunters in the state.  Contact a licensed bail bond firm and they can explain the different levels; plus provide more information.

VERMONT

There is no licensing requirement in Vermont.  You do need to obtain approval from the state  Commissioner of Banking and Insurance.  Upon approval the court can give you the authority to apprehend fugitives.

Bounty Hunters work with bonding companies.  Training is not required, but it is recommended to complete a bounty hunting course and try to get field training from another agent.

VIRGINIA

Virginia requires you to be 21 years old, have a high school diploma or GED and complete state approved training.

Once you complete the training you can apply for a state license.  No felony conviction allowed in your past.  You are required to be under contract with a bondsman to pursue a fugitive.  Virginia has quite a few laws in place that cover Bail Enforcement Agents and you need to know these laws.  The Department of Criminal Justice Services can offer you more information.

WASHINGTON

Washington requires you to have a license, be at least 21 years old, have a high school diploma or GED.  A felony conviction will not be accepted.  There is a requirement to complete state approved training.

There is a written exam and background check, along with state certification to carry a weapon.  You must be under contract with a licensed bail bond firm.

WEST VIRGINIA

There is no license requirement, but you must register with the West Virginia State Police Department.  In order to register you must have employment with one bail bonding company.

The State Police will conduct an interview to check your qualifications, perform a background check and ask what type of training you have completed.  It is recommended to talk with a bonding company to gather more information.

WISCONSIN

Wisconsin has no commercial bail bond system.   Bounty hunting is illegal and subject to arrest.

The courts and state law enforcement control the bail bond system.
WYOMING

There is no requirement for training or a license.  You must contract with bail bondsmen and follow the common laws of the state.

A Fugitive Recovery Agent can make an arrest without the approval of local police.  You must know the state laws that control the surety companies.  Recommendation is to contact a bonding company to gain more information.
CANADA

No bounty hunters allowed in Canada.

Canada and the United States have laws in place that there will be no cross-border kidnapping of Canadians.  The Canadian courts police their own bail enforcement.

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