courts/law, legal issues, courts/law, other, evaluation


Criminology and Criminal Justice


This article explores the current status of the licensing and regulation of bail recovery agents in the United States. By reviewing state legislative and administrative codes in all the 50 states, this study found that 24 states control bail recovery agents through licensure or the imposition of other occupational regulations. These state controls include age, criminal history, and pretraining and educational requirements; some states also require continuing education and training for licensure and/or regulation. In contrast, 18 states have no licensing or other occupational requirements for bail recovery agents. These findings raise questions about the actual utility and function of these laws, suggesting that states place minimal controls on this sector of the bail industry, oftentimes, relying upon voluntary self-regulation and governance of recovery agents. As such, the civil liberties of the public and criminal defendants may be at risk from this under-regulated profession.


Original Citation: Johnson, Brian R., and Ruth S. Stevens. "The Regulation and Control of Bail Recovery Agents: An Exploratory Study." Criminal Justice Review 38, no. 2 (2013): 190-206.