Colorado Bail Bond Laws: How to Get Someone Out of Jail
If someone you care for has been detained, understanding how the bail system works will assist in getting them released faster.
Bail is an amount of money or property posted with a court by a person charged with a crime. This is to guarantee (or at least make it more likely) that the individual will return for all court appearances. In most cases, those arrested can leave jail on bail, except when facing murder charges and certain violent felonies.
Factors Affecting Bail Amount
The judge will set the amount of bail according to individual circumstances. These factors include:
Safety of the Community
Judges consider the potential risk that is involved when releasing defendants who pose threats to public safety. If the defendant is considered high risk, the bail amount may be higher or not granted.
Seriousness of the Alleged Crime
The seriousness of the crime plays a significant role in determining the bail amount. The bail may be higher if the defendant is accused of a severe crime. This ensures the defendant is strongly incentivized to return to court to face their charges.
As part of their ruling for individuals accused of criminal conduct, judges often consider their previous criminal record in making decisions on bail amounts. An individual with no prior convictions often receives lower bail than someone with a criminal record.
Posting bail can be a difficult task, especially when it requires a significant sum of cash or collateral. If you find yourself in this situation, knowing your options is essential.
Cash bail is paid directly to the court. The money will be returned minus any court fees and fines if the defendant appears at all court dates. If the defendant does not attend court, the bail money is forfeited.
A bail bond, also known as a surety bond, involves hiring a third-party agency or bail bondsman. As part of their service, bail bonding agents require clients to pay an up-front non-refundable fee in return for their assistance. The premium is a percentage, typically around 10%-15% of the total bail amount set by the court. This fee is what the agent charges for taking the risk of posting the bail bond on behalf of the defendant.
It is essential to understand that this premium is nonrefundable and not contingent upon the outcome of the case.
With property bonds, the court will impose a lien on the property equivalent to the bail sum. This lien will be lifted once the defendant has met all their court-related obligations.
“Posting a property bond means you pledge the value of real property to the court to guarantee the defendant will appear in court.
If the defendant does not come to court when s/he is supposed to, the court will take the posted property as if it were cash bail.”
How a Lawyer Can Help With Bail and Getting Defendants Out of Jail
An experienced attorney can be beneficial when it comes to bail. They understand the ins and outs of the process, so they can guide you through it seamlessly. Here’s how they can help:
Argue Bail Amount: Before a judge sets the bail amount, a lawyer may argue in court for lower charges or even push for release on personal recognizance – this is where a defendant promises to show up at all future court dates without being required to pay any money.
Connect You With Bail Bond Company: If necessary, an attorney might also facilitate contacts with reputable bond companies ensuring that the defendant gets fair rates.
Argue For Bail Conditions: When conditions attached to bail seem overly restrictive or unfair, a criminal defense lawyer can argue against these conditions and provide alternatives.
If you need help with bail or have any other questions regarding a criminal matter, we’re here to help. Contact our Colorado Springs criminal defense lawyers to schedule a free consultation.