How to Make the Most of Your Time on Bail

How to Make the Most of Your Time on Bail

Getting arrested can be a frightening experience. If it has happened to you or someone you love, you're likely wondering what comes next.

After your arrest and processing, you’ll need to wait for your arraignment. This is a quick hearing in which the judge will explain your charges and set an amount for bail. It’s possible you will be denied bail, but this usually only happens when the charges are severe.

When you know your charges and how much you’ll need for bail, you can arrange to get yourself out.

A Step-by-step Explanation of the Bail Process

1. Decide Where the Money Will Come From

Most people don't have the money to bail themselves out, so getting help from a bail bonds service is usually necessary. These services ensure that you will only have to pay a small percentage of the total cost of the bond.

2. Contact the Bail Bonds Service

When the bail bonds service has all the needed information, they'll arrange for your bail out. You'll typically be required to pay 10 percent of the costs upfront. This amount is nonrefundable.

Putting up some form of collateral is also usually required. Bail bonds companies use collateral to offset any potential risks. Acceptable forms of collateral include vehicles, real estate, precious metals, and other items of value. If the person posting the bail has a large amount of savings, they can use that as collateral as well.

It’s important to note that there’s always a risk in taking out a bail bond for someone else. If the defendant you’ve bailed out decides to flee the area or otherwise misses their court date, you will owe the full bail amount.

3. Post Bail

Once you've been released back into the general public, you'll be free to do whatever you wish up until the day of your court appearance. Be sure to remain on your best behavior. Use this time to think about the future and how to provide the best possible outcome for yourself.

Making the Most of Your Time on Bail

You might feel somewhat uncomfortable being out on a bail bond. It’s preferable to sitting in jail, but the worry over what lies ahead may disrupt your everyday life. The best thing you can do during this time is prepare for the worst while hoping for the best.

Avoid Problems

The main thing you need to focus on while out on bail is avoiding any further trouble. Everything you do now has the potential to make or break your case. Whether or not you really did the thing you're accused of doesn't matter. If you want your legal team to create a strong defense, they need to be able to show that you're a safe and responsible citizen.

You should also be aware that even a misdemeanor charge could result in losing your bail bond.

Along with following all laws and regulations, steer clear of any situation that could put your freedom at risk. For example, you should avoid meeting up with friends who use illegal substances. Maybe you're sober, but that won't make much difference if your friends get in trouble while you're around. Likewise, it’s smart to stay away from alcohol. It may be legal, but it causes lowered inhibitions and bad decision making. Now is not the time to party.

Be Mindful of the Rules

On top of the laws that apply to the general public, you’ll also have specific rules for your time on bail. For example, there might be restrictions on traveling or being away from home at night. Your bail bonds agent may ask that you check in with them on a regular basis as well.

Get Your Ducks in a Row

If jail time is even a remote possibility, begin making arrangements while out on bail. Always plan for the worst when arranging for your time away. Consider responsibilities like your children, your property, and your job. How will these various areas of your life be affected by your absence? Who will pick up your mail while you’re away? Are there any major duties, such as registering a vehicle or paying an important bill, that you can handle in advance?

Prepare for the Big Day

The day of your court appearance will be pivotal, so use this time to prepare for it. Professional attire can make a good impression on a judge or jury. If you don’t already own nice clothes, do some shopping now while you have the time.

Another way you can prepare is by talking to your lawyer on a regular basis. Follow all instructions, and ask if there is anything else you can do to prepare.

Now that you know a little more about the bail process, you need a trustworthy bonds service. Andy Callif Bail Bonds has been providing bonds for the community since 1960. If you or someone you love needs bailing out, please give us a call today at (614) 945-4334.


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