Defendants charged with a crime may be released from jail if they can afford to pay their bail. This allows them to continue with their lives until their case is resolved.
Judges decide the amount of bail, considering various factors, including a defendant’s criminal and court history.
The Role of Bail Bonds in Pretrial Detention
Bail bonds are financial instruments that allow defendants or their families to post a percentage of the money needed for pretrial release. The idea is that defendants will return to court if they or their loved ones lose money, which can be a powerful incentive.
However, the amount required for a bail bond can be astronomical. When combined with many bail bond agents requiring a non-refundable premium, many low-income defendants remain incarcerated until their case is resolved.
Even more disturbing is that less demanding forms of bail, such as unsecured bonds, are used only a fraction of the time. Commercial bonds that require the use of private companies and impose forfeiture and re-arrest clauses in their contracts continue to dominate bonds posted in Supreme Court (the City’s trial court for felony cases).
The Role of Bail Bonds in Post-Conviction Detention
Bail is money paid to the court for a promise that you will appear as scheduled. You can pay the court directly in cash (the courts usually return this money at the end of your case), or you can pay a Lancaster County bail bonds company to guarantee your appearance. Bail bondsmen charge a fee … Read More