When someone is arrested (in states that operate with commercial bail), a determination is made as the type of pretrial release that will be considered based on the severity of the charge. For low level offenses, defendants are often cited and released or released on their own recognizance.
For more serious charges, a bail amount is often set by an officer of the court using a bail schedule (a predetermined range of bail amounts by charge category) maintained by that jurisdiction. Once a bail amount has been set, the defendant can now exercise his right to post bail. Initial bond settings are often reviewed within a few days if the defendant has not posted bail. Typically, the defendant enlists the help of family and friends who work with a 3rd party commercial bail agent to post their bond for a small fee (premium).
This additional layer of accountability ensures that the defendant will appear at all court proceedings and adhere to any other conditions set by the court. Once the defendant appears at all court proceedings and the case has been adjudicated, the bond is then discharged by the court releasing the financial responsibility of the bail agency based on the completion of the case.
Have questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.
If you or a loved one are needing helping with the bail process, please contact one of our agents today!
(Source: Indiana Surety Bail Agents Association)