Understanding the Bail Bond Process

Understanding the Bail Bond Process

The bail process is an instrument that the criminal justice system employs to provide defendants with the opportunity to remain free while their cases are pending. There are various types of bail bond that can help defendants obtain their release, for those who qualify.

Not everybody qualifies for Dauphin County bail bonds. Some crimes are deemed too serious to allow the accused to be released. Murder might qualify one for this or shooting rampages in which the shooter is deemed an imminent threat to society. On the other hand, some defendants are able to be released on their own recognizance because the court deems that they do not pose a threat to society and that they will not flee the court’s jurisdiction.

Cash Bond

The cash bond is the most expedient way to get a defendant released from jail. In this scenario, the defendant petitions for bail and the prosecution has a chance to object. If there is no objection, the court will declare an amount of money that the defendant must pay to obtain his or her immediate freedom. The amount depends on the seriousness of the crime or crimes as well as the criminal history of the defendant. If the defendant appears at the court date, they get the bail money back. If, however, they fail to appear, the money is forfeited to the court.

Surety Bond

In this scenario, a third party steps up to assume the bond on behalf of the defendant. Normally, an agent such as a bail bondsman will charge the defendant a small percentage of the bail amount. If the defendant shows up at court, the bail bondsman gets the money back that they put up. If the defendant doesn’t show up to court, the money is forfeited. There is typically a fee for this service.

Federal Bail Bond

This bond is in play if the defendant is being charged with a federal crime. Generally, this is a more serious offense and the bond will be higher. Kidnapping, hate crimes and fraud are examples of the federal offenses that necessitate this type of bond.

Obtaining bail is a privilege that defendants receive on behalf of the criminal justice system. If they obey the rules of the bond agreement, they do not lose any money or property and they get to be free until they go to court to face charges. Even if they cannot come up with the cash amount required by the court, there are ways by which the bond can be obtained.