There are few things in life more unpleasant than spending the night in jail. If you have been accused of a crime, you may be forced to stay overnight – or at least you will be if you don’t make bail. Below is a bit of information that everyone needs to know about making bail.
Bail can be set at a variety of different levels, largely based on both the crime of which you are accused and on your criminal record. When you work with a 24 hour bail bonds agent, though, you’re actually only going to end up paying a fraction of that cost. Most bail bonds agents charge their clients somewhere around ten percent of the total bail amount. If you choose to fund your bail on your own, you’ll need to pay the full amount.
Being out on bail can be a fairly lengthy experience. In some jurisdictions, an individual can expect to be out on bail for as long as four months. Typically speaking, this is equivalent to the amount of time that you would expect to be in jail as you awaited your trial. Actually getting to the point where you can post bail, though, is quicker – most jurisdictions will set your bail in a period of time not to exceed 72 hours.
Legal Right to Plea
One of your rights as a citizen is freedom from excessive bail. If you feel like the bail does not fit your crime and/or your criminal background, you can typically request a bail hearing. It will generally take another few days to get your hearing, at which time the judge will weigh the factors presented and make a judgment.
Getting Your Money Back
If you want to get your money back, you have to go to court. The rule in most jurisdictions is that the defendant will receive his or her bail money back after he or she makes all of his or her required court appearances. Note that this may not be an immediate process – if the person charged is found guilty, the bail money will not be remitted until he or she has been sentenced.
If you find yourself needing to make bail, your primary concern should be figuring out how to get the funds you need. Whether you can pay in cash or need the help of a bail agent, you’ll have more options once you are out of jail. From there, you can begin the process of mounting a defense and figuring out what comes next.