The amount of money you must post with the court in order to be freed from jail is referred to as bail. It’s a way for the court to make sure you’ll show up in the future.
The court will frequently deliver you on your own recognizance (generally alluded to as an O.R. discharge). You don’t pay bail if the adjudicator discharges you O.R.; all things being equal, you basically guarantee to show up in court. Furthermore, under certain conditions and in connection with certain offenses, the judge may restrict you from the ability to post bail.
Bail Varies Depending on the Crime and the State.
The amount of bail varies according to the offense. Every state has its own bail schedule that specifies the amount of bail for each sort of offense.
Almost all arrestees in Florida are released on their own recognizance. Bail is only used for persons arrested for major or violent offenses. Bail can be posted in three ways:
- Through cash bail
- Using a bail bond
- Through a property bond
What Does “Cash Bail” Mean?
If you want to be released on cash bail, you must pay the entire sum to the court clerk or the arresting agency. You may pay by cash, traveler’s check, money order, personal check, or bank cashier’s check, depending on the regulations of the individual court.
You will receive a full refund 2 to 3 months after the resolution of your case if you attend all of your court hearings. Your money is forfeited to the court if you fail to appear.
If the police, prosecution, or judge suspects you of obtaining your bail in a fraudulent manner, the court will “hold” your release and convene a hearing to settle the matter. The reason is that they believe you got your bail by means of an unlawful act, transaction, or incident constituting a felony.
It’s up to you to prove that the money was received legitimately. If you do, your bail will be accepted by the court. If you don’t, your bail will be rejected by the court.
The objective of bail is to guarantee your future court appearances, which is why this is a problem.
How do Bail Bonds Work?
Bail bonds are more commonly utilized since most people do not have the financial resources to post cash bail. The entire procedure of acquiring the bond takes less than 20 minutes. However, the defendant is usually freed from detention between 30 minutes and 4 hours after the bail is secured.
Bail bondsmen (also known as bail agents) are those who post bail in return for a non-refundable fee, which is usually set at ten percent. If your total bail is $50,000, for example, you will pay $5,000 to the bondsman.
Bail bondsmen’s contracts are usually for a year. If your case lasts longer than that, the agent will almost certainly ask you to pay a renewal fee.
Furthermore, many bondsmen may demand collateral. The term collateral refers to something of value that you provide the agent as assurance that you will not skip town. The agent has the right to hold or sell your collateral if you do so.
Collateral is also likely to vary depending on the bail agency. Bail amounts under $100,000 are not subject to collateral requirements by larger bail bond businesses.
As a cosigner, what are my responsibilities?
You become a cosigner if you are securing the bond for another person through a bail bond company. You’re guaranteeing as a cosigner that you’ll make sure the defendant shows up for all of their court hearings. This is true whether you pay the premium yourself or raise funds from others to post the bond.
The bond firm will initially try to locate and collect from the defendant if they fail to appear in court. If the bondsman is unable to do so, you are responsible for repaying him.
What Happens If I Don’t Show Up in Court After I’ve Paid Bail?
If you fail to appear for the court (commonly referred to as an “FTA”), Your bail is forfeited, and the court may issue an arrest warrant for you. If you paid cash bail, you will not receive any of it back. If you posted a bail bond, the bond firm will first ask you for reimbursement, then the cosigner.
The court may revoke and exonerate the bond if you appear within six months or 180 days of receiving the notice of bail forfeiture and offer an acceptable reason for your failure to appear.
Suitable justifications or good cause examples for an FTA include (but are not limited to):
- severe sickness
- being detained in another jurisdiction’s custody
When the case is resolved, what happens to the bail?
Once your case is settled, t47he court exonerates (or releases) your bail. Exoneration indicates that a person has been found not guilty of a crime.
Additionally, click strolenylaw.com for more information and answers to any questions relating to bail.