The reason likely has nothing to do with being short on cash.
A mugshot of Donald Trump taken at the Fulton County Sheriff's Office on August 24, 2023. Fulton County Sheriff's Office
Trump this week hired a local "bondsman to the stars" in Atlanta to cover his bail after getting booked on charges stemming from his efforts to overthrow the 2020 election in Georgia.
A bail bondsman makes money by charging a fee (usually a certain percentage of the bail amount) in exchange for putting up the full amount for their client.
Wealthy figures frequently hire bondsmen — even when they can afford to post the full amount — to make sure the process goes off without a hitch and check that they don't violate the terms of their bail, Ira Judelson, a New York-based bondsman who's represented a slew of famous clients, told Insider in an interview.
"I have skin in the game," Judelson said. "So I worry about my clients and making sure the bail process is moving along smoothly."
The percentage fee that bondsmen can charge varies from state to state — in New York, it's anywhere from 6-10%. In Atlanta, where Trump was booked, it's 10 to 15%. And the higher the bail amount, typically the lower the percentage charged.