After an arrest for committing a crime in California, a defendant is detained in a jail cell, where they remain awaiting trial. Facing an arrest can be a traumatizing experience for you and your family. Sitting behind bars will not only take up your time but can also cause emotional trauma. Fortunately, California law allows defendants facing criminal charges to secure a release before trial by posting bail.
In California, bail guarantees the court that a defendant will be present in all court proceedings, including trial. Bail is not a punishment for your crimes. However, paying the money to the court allows you to move on with your life while your case is pending. California is known for its high bail amounts, even for minor charges. Many defendants and their families cannot pay cash bail for these reasons.
You do not have to remain in jail if you lack the financial capacity to post bail. You can contact a surety company for financial assistance. At Bail Bonds, we will offer the financial assistance and expert guidance you need to post bail for your loved one in Temecula, CA.
Overview of Bail in California
Bail is a financial commitment that criminal defendants make with the court for a release with a pending trial. After posting bail, the court agrees to realize you while you wait for trial. The court may take a while to schedule your trial due to the numerous cases they handle. Therefore, remaining in jail may be unnecessary, especially when you are sure to fight the charges.
After your arrest and booking, a bail hearing is scheduled. At this hearing, the judge will determine your eligibility for a bail release and set a specific amount needed for your release. Unless you have committed a capital offense or posed a threat to society, most defendants facing felony and misdemeanor charges are entitled to a bail release. Bail amounts often vary depending on the specific facts of your criminal case.
During a bail release, the court will attach specific conditions the defendants must follow. Since bail is not part of the penalties for your crime, you will recover the amount paid to the court when the defendant attends all court proceedings and follows the bail conditions.
Types of Bail
There are several ways through which you could bail a loved one out of jail with a pending trial, including:
Own Recognizance Release
Not all defendants must make a monetary commitment to secure a release from jail. With a recognizance (OR) release, you will promise to appear in court for your trial and other proceedings. You will sign a promissory note instead of presenting money to the court clerk. You may be eligible for release without bail under the following circumstances:
- You are a first-time offender. Even when setting and granting bail, California law is strict on repeat offenders. Therefore, if the offense you are charged is your first, the court can release you on OR.
- You face minor charges. Bail money assures the court that a defendant will not skip bail to avoid the repercussions of their criminal conduct. You may not be tempted to skip bail if you face charges for a minor offense. In this case, the court can release you upon recognizance.
- You have no history of missing court dates. You can convince the judge to order a recognizance release if you have no history of missing court dates or skipping bail.
Although an own recognizance release does not involve making a monetary commitment, the judge may attach strict bail conditions.
Posting cash bail is an option for individuals with a high financial capacity. Before securing the release, you must present the full bail amount to the court. With this type of bail, you will not need an intermediary. Instead, you will go to court, present the money to a court clerk, and your loved one will be released. When the defendant goes to court for trial, and the case ends, you can collect a check with the full amount you paid.
Posting a cash bail is quick and convenient. However, you could open the door for financial scrutiny when you post a high bail amount in cash. Even if a defendant is not charged with a financial-related offense, the court and prosecutors may be curious about the source of the funds used for bail. Another drawback of posting cash bail is losing money when the defendant skips bail.
Securing a bail release for you or a loved one can be challenging when you need more money for the entire bail amount. However, the court allows you to present valuable property in exchange for a release. In this case, you can present real estate property, a vehicle, or valuable jewelry.
If you use real estate property, the court can put a lien on the property until the defendant has returned for scheduled court proceedings. Like cash bail, you can recover your property from the court when the case ends. However, if the defendant flees, you will lose the court in a forfeiture.
Before accepting a property bond, the court must ensure that the following conditions are met:
- The property value you seek to present as a bond for a loved one’s release must be up to 150% of the bail money. The court will decide the value of your property by checking current appraisals and the property's current market value.
- Your property will only be accepted as a bond if it is within the jurisdiction of the court where your case is tried.
- The court may schedule a property bond hearing where the ownership of the property you seek to present is determined. You must bring property deeds and other documents to prove ownership at this hearing. If the property is jointly owned, the court will require all individuals whose names appear on the deed to attend the property bond hearing.
- A property owner must sign an agreement with the court stating their intentions to have the property used as a bond. Additionally, the document will indicate the fate of the property depending on the defendant's conduct while out on bail.
Most defendants in California choose to post a bail bond for lack of financial capacity to post a cash or property bond. A bail bond is an agreement between the court and a bail bonds company. The Temecula bail bonds company will agree to post bail for you or your loved one for a fee. The bail bond process will start after your loved one’s arrest and booking. When your loved one calls you from a jail cell, you want to secure a fast release for them.
The first step in posting a bail bond is contacting a bail bonds company. The company will offer you the financial assistance you need to post bail for your loved one. Additionally, they can offer expert guidance to make the process easier and faster.
Unlike a cash bond, where you present the full bail amount to the court, you will only incur a 10% fee for the bail bond services. However, you must understand that this fee is not refundable even when the defendant attends trial and their case ends. Many bail bond companies claim to offer the best services in Temecula. Therefore, you must be cautious when finding the right company.
You can do this by checking company reviews and seeking referrals from family and friends. If you have hired a criminal defense lawyer for your loved one, you can ask the attorney to recommend a reliable Temecula bail bonds company. This helps ensure that you receive fast and reliable services.
Seeking a bail bond for a loved one or friend means that you will act as their co-signer. This means that you will sign the bail bond agreement for the defendant. Being a cosigner gives you the following responsibilities in the bail bond process:
- Cover bail bond costs. As a co-signer, you will be responsible for paying the costs of posting bail bonds. This includes the bail bond premium and providing collateral for the bail bond. If the defendant skips bail and the surety company employs a bounty hunter to find them, you must cover the bounty hunting costs.
- Ensure the defendant does not flee. When you co-sign a bail bond for a loved one or friend, you will ensure they attend all court proceedings, including trial.
- Ensure the defendant follows all bail conditions. The court imposes strict requirements for individuals released on bail.
The Role of a Temecula Bail Bonds Company
When you contact a Temecula bail bonds company for assistance posting your loved one’s bail, the company sends a bail bondsman to handle your case. The role of a bail bondsman in his case includes:
Determining Your Eligibility for Bail Bonds
Most people opt for a bail bond due to its affordability and convenience. However, not all defendants will qualify for this type of bond. When you seek a bail bond, the Temecula bail bondsman will ask about your situation to determine if you qualify to receive assistance from their company.
Qualification for a bail bond depends on the defendant’s likelihood of returning for trial after release. The bail bond company may be reluctant to offer bail bonds if a defendant is a flight risk or has an extensive criminal history. Additionally, your ability to pay the costs of a bail bond is key.
Complete Bail Bonds Paperwork
A bail bond is a legally binding agreement. Therefore, numerous pieces of paperwork must be signed before agreeing. Your bail bondsman will take you through the relevant paperwork and sign it.
When you sign a bail bond agreement, the bail bondsman will go to court and present the bail money in exchange for your loved one’s release. This means you do not have to make endless trips to the court to process the release.
Middleman between the Court, Defendant, and Surety Company
A bail bondsman is the intermediary between a defendant, the court, and a bail bond company. Therefore, they will be responsible for passing information around. This allows you and the defendant to stay informed on the progress of the bail release. The role of the bail bondsman will not end when your loved one is out of jail, and they can offer you the guidance you need to put you at ease through the bail bond process.
Arrest the Defendant
When a bail bonds company secures a defendant’s release, the responsibility of ensuring the defendant is present for trial shifts to them. If the defendant skips bail, the company risks losing its money. For this reason, the bail bondsman has the authority to employ a bounty hunter to track and arrest a defendant who does not appear for trial.
Jails around Temecula, CA, include:
South West Detention Center
The following are courts serving Temecula, CA:
Superior Court of California—Temecula Courthouse
Superior Court of California—Southwest Justice Center
Find a Competent Bail Bonds Company Near Me
That call to inform you that your loved one has been arrested can be nerve-wracking. After receiving the arrest news, your first thought is to secure a fast release for the defendant to prevent them from spending unnecessary time behind bars. You can secure a defendant’s release before trial by posting their bail.
A judge sets bail for a defendant on the first court appearance, and the amounts vary depending on the severity of the charges and the defendant’s criminal history. Not all individuals can afford to present the full bail amount required to secure a release. Therefore, most people opt for a bail bond, which is fast, easy, and affordable. When you contact a surety company, they send a bail bondsman to pay your loved one’s bail at a fee, often 10% of the total bail amount.
In addition to the financial assistance, the surety company will offer the guidance you need for a smooth bail process. Choosing the right bail bond service can improve your bail-posting experience. If you seek a bail bond for a loved one or friend detained in Temecula, you will need our expert services at Bail Bonds. Call us today at 323-579-1415 for much-needed assistance.