To become a bounty hunter in Indiana, candidates must complete the following steps:
|Determine Eligibility in Indiana|
|Fulfill Indiana Educational and Training Requirements|
|Pass the Indiana Licensing Exam|
|Apply for your Indiana State License|
|Obtain Employment in Indiana|
In recent years, the bail industry in Indiana has experienced some significant changes, and bail bond companies have voiced their criticism. In some counties like Tippecanoe, a new bond schedule has been introduced which requires a ten percent cash option for bails in the amount of $5,000 or less. This has reduced the bail bond activity by 90 percent or more. This practice, which is commonly known as deposit bail, is a strategy for county and local governments to compete for bail funds. In response many bail companies have urged state lawmakers to introduce new laws making Indiana a no-credit state and allowing defendants access to bail bonds under virtually any charge.
The Indiana Department of Insurance is the licensing and regulatory agency for bounty hunters, which are designated as bail recovery agents, in Indiana.
Step 1: Determine Eligibility in Indiana
The Indiana Department of Insurance requires that all bail recovery agents meet the following requirements:
- Must be at least 18 years old
- Must be a U.S. citizen
- Must have resided in the state for the past six months
- Must pass the state licensing exam
- Provide a credit history report
- Must have completed the 12 hour pre-licensing education
- Must be at least ten years since any felony conviction or five years since any misdemeanor conviction
- Must possess the funds for the $300 licensing fee
- Must notify the sheriff of the county where they reside of their status as a bail recovery agent
Step 2: Complete Education and Training Requirements in Indiana
Many of the most successful bounty hunters in Indiana have benefited from a college degree. The most beneficial degrees are bachelor’s or associate’s degrees in criminal justice, police studies, law or psychology. These degrees are not only helpful in investigating the whereabouts of fugitives, but can provide a valuable academic foundation for professionals who may wish to join the law enforcement or private detective professions.
Bounty hunters in Indiana are required to complete the 12 hour pre-licensing education which helps prepare candidates to take and pass the bail recovery agent exam. This course can be found at local colleges or online schools and includes instruction on
- Department of Insurance
- Bail recovery agent licensing and regulations
- Bail bond basics
- Bail recovery agent practices and procedures
- Law enforcement principles
Step 3: Pass the Indiana Bail Recovery Agent Exam
All Indiana bounty hunters must pass the Indiana Bail Recovery Agent Exam to obtain licensure. Applicants may sign up for this exam at the Indiana Department of Insurance website. There is a $100 examination fee which must be submitted in the form of a credit or debit card payment along with the exam application. This is a 60 multiple choice question exam that must be completed in an hour. Test takers must bring their certificate of completion from their pre-licensing course to sit for this exam.
Step 4: Apply for an Indiana Bail Recovery Agent License
To apply for an Indiana Bail Recovery Agent License, candidates should follow this procedure:
- Submit a signed, completed application
- Provide a check or money order for the $300 license fee payable to the Indiana Department of Insurance
- Submit at Credit Bureau Report
- Submit a criminal history check
- Submit a completion certificate for the 12 hour pre-licensing course
- Provide a score report from the Indiana Bail Recovery Agent exam
- Submit fingerprints
The Indiana Bail Recovery Agent License is in force for two years. To qualify for license renewal, agents must complete six hours of continuing education prior to license expiration and provide the $300 license renewal fee.
Step 5: Obtain Employment in Indiana
The best way to learn how to succeed as a bounty hunter in Indiana is to join a bail bonds company. There are numerous bail bonds companies in the state who may be willing to hire a new bounty hunter including:
- Woods Bail Bonds
- Indy Bail Bonds
- Bad Boys Bail Bond
- 24/7 Bail Bonds
The premier organization for Indiana bounty hunters is Indiana Surety Bail Agents Association.