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Bounty Hunter

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The Hunt - Tales of a modern day Bounty Hunter  *   WARNING:  Harsh Language

Bounty Hunters Wanted.

Bounty Hunters are known by various titles.  They can be called a Bail Enforcement Agent, Fugitive Recovery Agent, Bail Agent or a Bail Fugitive Recovery Agent.  The titles vary around the U.S., although most senior agents prefer Fugitive Recovery Agent or Bail Enforcement Agent. The most important part of the job is not the title, it is what you are expected to accomplish.  As a Fugitive Recovery Agent you are hired by a bail bond company to capture a person who does not appear in court on their hearing date and return them to jail.

Bounty Hunters normally work as independent agents for a bonding company and are responsible for all of their own expenses.  Why would someone want to do this type of work?  The reason is very simple, they do this job for the money.  Most Bounty Hunters receive up to 10% of the total bond amount upon capture.  If they fail to capture the fugitive, they do not get paid.  There are some senior agents who earn $ 2,000 to $ 3,000 in a single day.

The history of the profession goes all the way back to the mid-1600's with the British government.  The British passed laws which stated that an accused individual could be set free from jail if they paid funds for their bail; which was determined by the court.  In the late-1800's the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Bounty Hunters could capture and arrest fugitives for a monetary fee.  Thus, the Bounty Hunter was born.

To become a Bounty Hunter does not require a formal education, although this can vary per each state.  There are states that require Bounty Hunters to complete certain required training and have a state license.  There are other states which have minimal requirements and a few states that do not allow Bounty Hunters.  You will need to find out which laws apply within the state you work.  There may be a requirement for specific training and to obtain a state license.

Why would you want to become a Bounty Hunter ?

A Bounty Hunter can earn a substantial amount of money; the key is the number of captures.  Incomes can run as low as $ 25,000 a year to over $ 100,000 a year.  If you remember "Dog The Bounty Hunter", from the T.V. show, he had one famous capture where the bail amount was one-million dollars and his fee was over $ 100,000.  That is not bad for one fugitive caught and returned to jail.

Despite the income a Bounty Hunter can earn, realize that the job is very grueling.  You can expect to spend many hours talking to people who know the fugitive and chasing down leads.  A lot of time will be spent observing various locations waiting for the fugitive to appear.  The job can be dangerous at times.  There are fugitives that do not want to be back in jail and will do anything to be free.  This is why most Bounty Hunters are licensed to carry a weapon.

Most senior Bounty Hunters will tell you that it is very important to treat all fugitives with respect.  In addition you must respect the job, the various people you come in contact with and the bail bondsman you represent.  The profession can be very rewarding, both personally and financially.  It all depends on how smart you work, the quality of training received and the contacts you develop.

Bounty Hunters in action (videos).

                  Fox News Travels With Jim Elliot                                      60 Minutes Travels With Bounty Hunters

Bounty Hunter questions.

Is this line of work dangerous?      If you do not receive the correct training and do not understand how the fugitive recovery system works, then the job can be very dangerous.  You want to learn from the best to know all the various techniques, hidden secrets, and laws to follow.

Why is bounty hunter such a hated term?      The term bounty hunter goes back to the wild west of the 1800's.  During that period the name described bringing a fugitive back to jail either dead or alive.  That mindset has remained and senior agents hate to be called bounty hunters..  Today, the correct job title is Fugitive Recovery Agent or Bail Enforcement Agent. 
Do I need a license?      There are some states that require you to have specialized training and/or a state license.  There are other states that do not require a license.  Then, there are states that do not allow bounty hunting and want local law enforcement to handle all bail recovery.

What is the fastest way to start?        Find someone who knows the business and offer your services.  To give a little incentive to hire you, tell them you will work for free, for a specified time period  (like two weeks or one month).  You need to work with a Bonding Firm or a Fugitive Recovery Agency.  Check out their services and record before you approach them  (the internet should help in this search).  Check the BBB in their area and see if they have a complaint filed with

Will I need to physically apprehend fugitives?      You can have others apprehend the fugitive.  A lot of agents work with a partner or have a small group to assist in capturing someone.  

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