When a defendant is in the process of bailing out of jail with a bail bond, they will need a loved one to commit to the role of a co-signer. The co-signer is tasked with making sure the defendant shows up for their scheduled court date. How involved they are with this task varies from family to family, as it depends on how mature, responsible, and honest the defendant is. One defendant can get him or herself to court without trouble, while another may attempt to flee the city, which is when the co-signer really needs to step in.
If the defendant does not show up for court, their bail can be revoked and a warrant for their arrest will be issued. Additionally, any collateral that was pledged will not be returned to the owner.
Agreeing to the role of a bail bond co-signer definitely has its risks, which means it is important for the co-signer to really know the defendant well. However, a bail bond co-signer can actually have their name withdrawn from the role at any time. They face no consequences by doing this, except maybe some anger from the defendant, who would need to find a new co-signer.