Answering Some Basic Questions About Bail

When you have been arrested and charged with a crime, it is important to be able to leave the jail so that you can better organize your defense. To this end, bail is a common part of the criminal justice system, but many people have a limited understanding about bail. By learning answers to some of the more common bail questions, you will be better able to understand what you should expect.

What If A Defendant Is Denied Bail Or It Is Set Too High To Pay?

There can be a number of factors that will determine the amount of the bail that the courts require, and it is also possible for the right of bail to be refused. Unfortunately, there can be instances where the bail amount is set too high for the defendant to pay even with the use of a bail bondsman. When this is the case, it is possible for your defense attorney to petition the judge to lower the bail amount. This is done by showing your assets, income and ties to the community. If you are determined to be a low risk for fleeing, the judge may agree to lower your bail.

How Long Will It Take To Be Released After Posting Bail?

Defendants should be aware that it can take several hours before the bail is fully processed by the jail, and the defendant will not be released until this is completed. Unfortunately, there is nothing that can be done to expedite this process, and the amount of time it takes will largely depend on the current workload of the jail employees. As a result, bail that is posted late at night may take longer to process due to fewer administrative staff working.

What Happens To Your Collateral If You Used A Bail Bondsman?

If you lack the money to pay the full amount of your bail, you will likely need to use a bail bondsman. Before issuing the bail bonds, these professionals will likely require some form of collateral to ensure that the defendant does not simply run away. Due to the costs of bail, this collateral may need to be a major possession, such as a car, home or retirement account. While you may be concerned about using these expensive possessions as collateral, your collateral will be returned as soon as the trial is completed as long as there was no attempt to flee. If the defendant flees, it is likely that the collateral will be forfeited.