If someone you love has been charged with a crime, it is essential to understand that it may take months or years for the case to resolve. During that time, they may be eligible to stay out of jail. After they have been charged and detained, the defendant’s attorney can provide critical assistance in helping them get released from custody. This allows them to avoid being incarcerated while their case is pending.
Getting them out of jail puts them in a better position to work with their attorney to build an appropriate defense, and it gives them the time they need to be with their families. This is an incredibly emotional and stressful time for everyone, and you should find an empathetic attorney who realizes this. They can be a source of hope and inspiration.
How Bonds Work
In State Court, with the exception of felonies punishable by life, crimes have standard bond amounts. There is always an opportunity to argue for a bond. An individual can pay the bond through the Clerk of Courts or pay a percentage (usually 10%) to a bondsman. On the other hand, in Federal Court, there is no such thing as a standard bond and every individual must appear before a judge or magistrate. A first appearance will usually occur within 24 hours of arrest unless the arrest occurs on a weekend. At the first appearance, a bond agreed to by the prosecution and defense can be entered on an individual’s behalf. If there is any disagreement or the government is seeking pretrial detention, then a detention hearing will be held. Prosecutors can request a delay for up to three days. Defense attorneys can make the same request but for up to five days. Usually such hearings are held within the first few days of arrest. Regardless of who asks for it, you must remain in custody until the hearing.
For many people, the closest they will come to experiencing this is through fictional platforms such as television. You’ve seen the judge strike the gavel and state that bail has been set for a specified amount—which can be quite large depending on charges and other factors. In real life, there usually is no gavel but there are different kinds of bond that can be set in federal court. The three types of bonds available are signature bonds (promise to appear based upon individual’s signature); percentage bond (payment based upon percentage ordered by Court); and corporate surety bond (15% of bond paid using bondsman). It is common for courts to order a combination of bonds, for example if the Court orders a $250,000 personal surety bond and $100,000 10% bond, the individual will need to sign for the bond and pay $10,000. The best thing about a percentage bond is that the Clerk of Court holds the money and when the case has concluded, the money will be returned to the person that posted the bond. On the other hand, if the Court orders a corporate surety bond, a bondsman is required and a payment of 15% of the ordered bond amount will usually need to be paid to the bondsman in consideration for them signing on the bond.
At the beginning of this article, we discussed the importance of having an attorney who understands how difficult this is for you and your loved ones. At Puglisi Caramés, we deliberately work very closely with clients and their families to help them navigate the complexities of being charged with a crime. In addition to providing first-class representation, we will always treat you with the respect you deserve. When you work with us, you will have someone by your side. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.