SB 459 - This act modifies provisions relating to bail bond agents and surety recovery agents.
Under this section, the Department of Insurance is required to notify general bail bond agents who are listed as having a forfeited bond. Such attempt to notify general bail bond agents by the department must be made by fax or e-mail within 48 hours of the forfeiture being listed with the department.
The Department shall include the photograph provided by a person during the application process on his or her agent license.
This section requires a person to provide the name, address, and telephone number of each employer for which he or she works or operates under as an independent contractor to the Department of Insurance upon receiving a bail bond agent or general bail bond agent license. The information must be updated before the person writes bond as a new employee or independent contractor.
For any new appointment of a bail bond agent, the bail bond agent shall file an affidavit with the Department and the appointing general bail bond agent stating that to his or her knowledge there are no outstanding premiums owed at the time of his or her new appointment. If outstanding premiums are owed and the bail bond agent does not satisfy the premium obligations that such agent is liable for, the former general bail bond agent shall file notice to the bail bond agent and the newly appointing general bail bond agent of the failure to satisfy the obligations. Upon receipt of notification, the appointing general bail bond agent may immediately cancel the newly appointing bail bond authority of such agent.
This section requires an applicant to provide the results of a criminal history background check processed by the Highway Patrol to the Department.
This section requires each individual applicant or, if the applicant is a corporation writing surety on behalf of an insurance company, that each corporate officer has completed at least two years as a bail bond agent and possesses liquid assets of at least $20,000, along with a duly executed assignment of $20,000 to the state of Missouri. Currently, the applicant must have liquid assets and a duly executed assignment of $10,000 respectively.
In addition to the current reasons for which the Department may take administrative disciplinary action against the holder of a license, it may also do so for: 1) final adjudication or a plea of guilty to a felony regardless of when it occurred; or 2) failure to meet qualifications for surety on bail bonds as provided by supreme court rule.
In lieu of filing a complaint at the administrative hearing commission for suspension or revocation, after a hearing before the director of the Department, the director may order other authorized discipline or the director and the agent may enter into an agreement for a consent order. The provision allowing the director to issue a cease and desist order or seek an injunction is repealed.
Any bail bond agent or general bail bond agent who has his or her license revoked by the Director of the Department must return such license to the Department.
A bail bond agent shall be qualified to write bail in a circuit or municipal court if the general bail bond who employs the agent or who directs the agent as an independent contractor is licensed and qualified to write bail as provided by supreme court rule. A bail bond agent writing bail on behalf of a general bail bond agent must provide the legal name of such general bail bond agent.
If a person released on bond fails to appear on the court date, the court clerk shall issue a summons directed to the general bail bond agent or surety on the bond requiring such person to appear before the court on a certain return date to show cause why a bond forfeiture and final judgement should not be issued. The summons shall be served at least 90 days before the return date on the summons. The general bail bond agent or surety shall have 90 days from the date of the forfeiture hearing to return such defendant to custody. When the court records indicate the defendant is returned within 90 days, the court clerk shall enter minutes vacating the forfeiture and exonerating such bond. If the defendant has been returned to custody, but such fact is not reflected in court records, the court shall vacate the forfeiture and exonerate the bond.
This section requires any licensed bail bond or general bail bond agent who is arrested for a felony to notify the Department of Insurance within 10 days of his or her arrest.
If the director determines a person engaged in such bail bond business has violated certain statutory provisions, the director may issue an administrative order or maintain a civil action for relief.
In addition to the current reasons for which the Department may take administrative disciplinary action against the holder of a surety recovery license, it may also do so for final adjudication or a plea of guilty to a felony regardless of when it occurred.
In lieu of filing a complaint at the administrative hearing commission for suspension or revocation, after a hearing before the director of the Department, the director may order other authorized discipline or the director and the surety recovery agent may enter into an agreement for a consent order. The provision allowing the director to issue a cease and desist order or seek an injunction is repealed.
If the director determines a person engaged in the surety recovery business has violated certain statutory provisions, the director may issue an administrative order or maintain a civil action for relief.
A person who violates a provision of the surety recovery statutes shall be guilty of a class D felony. If the offender hold a license or certificate of authority, the court imposing the sentence shall order the director to revoke such license or certificate.
This act is similar to HB 1165 (2007).
SUSAN HENDERSON MOORE