Tuesday, December 15, 2009

How do you determine a bond?

I always get a number of questions about bonds. Why is my bond so high? Why do I need a bond? Can my bond be lowered?

Generally as a Defendant in a criminal case, the Judge will grant you some sort of bond. By making this bond you guarantee that you will show up for your court proceedings.

Judges have guidelines although there are no hard and fast rules as to what your bond will be based on your charge. Judges make you post a bond to ensure that you will return to court.

The major factors in determining your bond

1. Do you have ties to the community? - Generally if you are arrested where you live your bond will be lower than if you are arrested out of state. You are determined to be much less of a flight risk in your own community.

2. Are you employed? - Those who have good stable employment are less likely to put that job in jeopardy by skipping court.

3. Do you have family members that have ties to the community? - If your family members have good standing they are more likely to ensure that you will show up for court and protect their reputation. Especially if these family members help post your bond.

4. Have you failed to show up for court in the past? - We are creatures of habit and if you skipped out in the past you are considered more likely to skip out on the future.

5. How much can you afford to pay -

Bonds come with conditions set by the Judge. If you fail to comply with these conditions your bond can be revoked. Most bonds require that you remain drug free and require drug tests even for crimes where drugs are not directly involved. If you fail a drug test your bond might be revoked. If you commit more crimes while out on bond your bond might be revoked.

Let us know if you have more questions.

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