Mans hands resting on jail bars from cell

Am I Eligible for Bail?

Once an individual is arrested and charged with a crime, chances are he or she will need a bail bondsman in order to gain freedom pending the outcome of the case. Without a bondsman, the individual may be forced to sit in jail until a judge or jury decide his/her final fate. However, even with a bondsman on hand, not everyone can be released on bail.

Who is eligible for bail and who is not?

Everyone who is held in custody without bail can request a bail hearing, which is normally done through defense counsel. At the hearing, the Judge hears argument from both sides before making a determination on whether to set bail. The Judge will consider two main factors in determining whether an individual is eligible for release:

1. Whether he/she is a flight risk; and
2. Whether he/she is a danger to the community.

If the Judge feels the individual has sufficient ties to the area and would not risk fleeing from justice, and provided the individual doesn’t pose a threat to others, he/she is likely to be eligible for bail. If, however, the individual is a flight risk and/or a danger to the community, he/she will not be eligible for bail.

Individuals who don’t have close family, job or other significant connections to the area might be considered a flight risk, especially if they are charged with a serious crime that carries heavy penalties. The same is true if they failed to make past Court appearances or have previously been caught running from the law.

Individuals Exempt From Bail

Individuals might be considered dangerous to the community and, therefore, exempt from bail if:

  • They are habitual offenders with an extensive criminal record.
  • Their crime is especially serious or violent, such as a felony sex offense or malicious wounding.
  • Their criminal behavior places others at risk of serious injury or death, such as selling drugs and drunk driving.
  • They are charged with a capital offense, such as murder of a law enforcement officer.

What does a bail bond company do?

A bail bond company like All-Pro Bail Bonds can get individuals released from jail when they cannot afford the full bail amount set by a Judge. A bondsman requires payment of only a small portion of the bail amount, usually 10%. In return, the bail bond company contracts with the Court to guarantee all of the accused individual’s future Court appearances. If an individual fails to make Court appearances and becomes a fugitive from justice, the bail bond company is responsible for the entire bail amount to the Court.

How the bail process works

Once a bail amount is set, accused individuals have three options:

1. Pay the Court the full amount, which will be returned once the case is over.

2. Pay a non-refundable 10% of the bail amount to a bail bond company.

3. Do neither and stay in jail.

For those who cannot afford the full amount of bail or don’t have enough collateral to cover it, a bail bondsman will be their only ticket to freedom while they await the final disposition of their case. Once payment arrangements are made, the bondsman files bond papers with the jail and the individual is processed out for release.

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