Why is my Family Member Required to Post a Bail Bond?

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Many people find themselves on the other side of the law. This can be planned, unplanned, accidental, or by false accusation. When this occurs, the process can be utterly confusing and many are troubled with where to even begin. The first question you might ask yourself or others is why your family member was arrested, "what did they allegedly do?". This is obviously an important question, but the next question to ask yourself is "will they be required to post a bail bond or be released?" This may be considered the most stressful time during the process due to many unknowns that include whether the person will be released within 24 hours, whether a bail bond will be required, how little or high the bail bond amount will be, what are the additional release conditions if any, and so on. When a person is arrested, they will be scheduled to see a judge within 24 hours. At this court appearance, the judge will determine what the release conditions are depending on several different factors. Possible release conditions include release on own recognizance, an unsecured appearance bail bond, a secured appearance bail bond, a cash only bail bond, release to a pre trial agency, release to a pre trial agency with electronic monitoring, and even no bond or non bondable. An Arizona judge will determine what he or she feels is appropriate for the release based on the severity of the alleged charges and initial evidence, the financial capability for the accused to afford bail, the accused past criminal background, the accused failure to appear at prior court dates history, the "flight risk" of the individual, and ties to the local community. While looking at these factors, the judge will then announce the release conditions that determine what will happen next. Some individuals being charged with petty offenses with lack of criminal backgrounds may be released on their own recognizance, while others being charged with alleged serious felony offenses and/or a long list of prior convictions may be held and required to post a bail bond. Bail Bonds can range from a merely fifty dollars, and can go as high as a couple million dollars. Every individual is looked at on a case by case basis with no "bail schedule". This means that the overall requirement to post a bail bond and the amount required is not determined through a chart in which a math problem gives the judge the answer. This process is purely discretional based on required factors the judges have to consider. This is why your family member may have a certain release condition, while others in similar situations may have a release condition that is completely different.