Connecticut Bounty Hunter Guide: Requirements and Steps

    Connecticut has a population of approximately 3.6 million people.1 This page provides information on the process of becoming a bounty hunter in Connecticut, where the profession is regulated by the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP). Bounty hunters, also commonly referred to as bail enforcement agents in Connecticut, locate and apprehend individuals who have “skipped” the bail posted by a bail bondsman by not showing up to an appointed court date. Continue reading to find out more about becoming a bounty hunter in Connecticut, as well as information on careers in private investigation and other related professions.

    Table of Contents

    Requirements for Prospective Bounty Hunters in Connecticut

    Bounty hunting is a licensed profession governed by the DESPP. To be eligible for a license in Connecticut, you must be:

    • At least 21 years of age
    • A US citizen or naturalized US citizen
    • A high school graduate or GED holder
    • Free of any felony or certain misdemeanor convictions

    Steps to a Career as a Bail Enforcement Agent (BEA) in Connecticut

    The bail enforcement agent application process includes many forms and steps. To learn more about this process, read the information provided below.

    1. Attend approved criminal justice training and firearms training if applicable.

    All bounty hunter applicants must complete at least 20 hours of approved training no more than five years prior to your application for a license. Additionally, if you plan to carry a firearm while working, you must have a Connecticut-issued pistol permit and attend an approved firearm training course to obtain a bail enforcement agent gun permit.

    2. Have your fingerprints taken by an authorized office.

    You must submit copies of your fingerprints taken at your local police department or at the DESPP. The cost of fingerprinting is your responsibility and may vary according to where your fingerprints are taken

    3. Submit your completed application package.

    Submit the application form with the $200 application fee (as of July 2022), a notarized Authorization for Release of Personal Information form, a copy of your driving record for the past three years, a copy of your driver’s license, a copy of your high school diploma, GED, or college transcript, and two passport-style photos. You must also have four character reference letters sent directly to the DESPP as part of your application.

    For the cost of the background checks, you must include two cashier’s checks or money orders in the amounts of $13.25 and $75, payable to the Treasurer, State of Connecticut.

    If you previously served in the military, you must also submit the DD-214 form indicating how you were discharged, or if you previously served in the police force, you must include a discharge letter. Note that persons currently holding police powers in any state are not eligible for a bounty hunter license in Connecticut.

    4. Attend the interview.

    Once your application has been received, the DESPP will complete a thorough background investigation that can take up to eight weeks. During that time, you will be invited to an oral interview.

    5. Receive your license and obtain your uniform.

    If your application is approved, you will receive a license valid for one year. When working on-the-job, bail enforcement agents are required to wear a top (jacket, shirt, or vest) with “Bail Enforcement Agent” clearly visible on the front and back in yellow reflective writing and have their license card clearly visible. You must renew your license every year before the expiration date, and there is no grace period. Renewals cost $100 (as of July 2022).

    Related Careers

    In addition to bounty hunting, there are related career opportunities in the criminal justice sector that may appeal to you. Two examples are listed below.

    Private Investigator/Private Detective

    Private investigators (PIs) and private detectives (PDs) research and find information related to ongoing legal cases and are often hired by law firms and private companies. The DESPP also issues separate licenses for both private investigators and private detectives with the main difference being that private investigators must be employed and registered through a licensed private detective agency and private detectives may work independently and have a wider scope of allowable duties. See the DESPP website for further information and to apply.

    Process Server

    Process servers deliver notices of legal action on behalf of courts or private agencies. This job does not require a license in Connecticut, but your activities must be directed and supervised by an authorized individual according to the law. Look for job opportunities at process server agencies or with your local court.

    Training and Education Options in Connecticut

    Although a formal education is not required, if you want to obtain relevant training at the college level prior to becoming a bail enforcement agent, a criminal justice program may be a good choice. Many colleges offer two-year associate degree programs with courses on the criminal justice system, corrections, psychology, and law. Schools offering such programs in Connecticut include:

    Capital Community College
    950 Main St
    Hartford, CT 06103

    Goodwin College
    1 Riverside Drive
    East Hartford, CT 06118

    University of Bridgeport
    126 Park Ave
    Bridgeport, CT 06604

    Finding Work

    Once you receive your license, you will need to find work by approaching bail bond agencies that hire bounty hunters on a permanent or freelance basis to locate and retrieve clients who have skipped bail. Therefore, having a strong network of contacts can be a great help when starting your career in this area. If you are new to the field, you might consider approaching experienced bail enforcement agents who will mentor you and help you build your connections and reputation. Research local agencies using directories or associations for agents, private investigators, or private detectives. There are four Connecticut bail agents registered with the Professional Bail Agents of the United States (PBUS).

    Featured Bail Agents in Connecticut

    This list of bail bond agencies in Connecticut may help you find agencies that offer work for bail enforcement agents. These agencies are included based on positive reviews, having an up-to-date website, or because they are well-known.

    3-D Bail Bonds
    57 Fishfry St
    2nd Fl
    Hartford, CT 06120

    Aces Bail Bonds
    1125 North Ave
    Bridgeport, CT 06604

    Alliance Bail Bonds
    38 Haviland St
    Bristol, CT 06010

    BailCo Bail Bonds
    405 Center St
    Manchester, CT 06040

    Gorilla Bail Bonds
    136 Main St
    Ste 201
    New Britain, CT 06051

    Statewide Bail Bonds
    103 Broad St
    Norwich, CT 06360

    To find even more bail agents and bondsmen in your area, use the Member Search tool on the PBUS website.

    Bounty Hunter Salary and Outlook in Connecticut

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not collect information on bounty hunters; therefore, we use the data on private investigators and detectives as a proxy due to its similarity. In 2021, there were 380 private investigators and detectives in the state with an average salary of $67,000.2 The highest average reported salaries were in the Hartford area.2 This compares favorably with the national average for the same time period, which was $60,970.3 Projections through 2030 indicate that PI jobs in Connecticut should increase by 7.8% positions, with an annual average of 50 openings including replacements.4

    City or Metropolitan AreaNumber Employed2Average Annual Salary2
    Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford150$67,140
    New Haven60$56,990

    Additional Resources

    1. US Census Bureau Quick Facts, Connecticut: https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/CT/PST045221
    2. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, May 2021, Connecticut: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ct.htm
    3. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2021, Private Investigators: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes339021.htm
    4. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/Projections/LongTerm