If your loved one or close friend has been arrested and you have notice of their bail being set, this gives you an opportunity to come up with the bail money and let them be released until their court date. You have multiple options for getting the bail money and you must pay it to the jail, or go through a bail bonds company, before they can be released. Here is some information about how bail and bail bonds work.
Types of Bail
There are actually five different types of bail and bonds: cash, surety, cite out, release on personal recognizance and property bond. Cash bail means that bail was put up for someone to be released until their next court appearance, and someone pays the full bail amount in cash, or a credit card. The surety bond is a bail bond that covers the bail amount for release, but you must pay a small percentage as a fee to the bail bond company. Other types of bails, though less common, are a release on citation, otherwise known as cite out, being released on your own recognizance without paying, and using property as a bond.
Benefits of Bail
Once a certain type of bail has been determined, you can move forward with getting your friend or loved one released. There are a variety of benefits to making bail, so if this has happened for you or someone you know, you should try to take advantage of it. The first and most obvious benefit is being let out of jail. It can take a while to schedule your next hearing or court appearance, especially if your case ends up going to trial. This might mean weeks or months in jail. If bail was set, you can wait out this time at home. It also gives you the chance to find your own proof of your innocence, rather than simply leaving it up to your lawyer.
How the Process Works
The bail process is fairly straightforward. It starts with someone being arrested and booked. Once this happens, a judge receives their documentation. A bail hearing may be set, where the judge decides if they are eligible for bail. If so, they can contact a loved one and inform them of the bail amount. As the loved one or friend, you can choose to pay the bail in cash or get a bail bond. If you decide on a bail bond, find a reputable company and go through their short process. While you won’t be paying the entire bail amount, you do owe around 10% of the bail amount to the bondsman. This could be $100, $1,000 or more. Once the bail is paid or the bond is processed, the person arrested should be released within a few hours. If it is in the middle of the night, it might take a little longer than during the day or weekday. The crime they are accused of and their criminal history typically determine how much bail is set for, or if it is approved at all.