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How to Post Bail for a criminal charge in Florida

On Behalf of | Nov 18, 2019 | Bail, Criminal Defense

A Florida criminal lawyer will readily explain things to you that it can be a complicated situation when a loved one or a family member is jailed in a town like Orlando and you as the person who wants to assist lives in Tallahassee. In this case, the laws in Florida say that you can arrange as a friend or the family for what is called transfer bond. The cost is between $50 and $100 which is greater than the typical amount you pay for bonds. This bind can also be used in a different location other than Florida such as another state. If you are in search of bond companies, many have affiliated agents in different and many locations in the state. You can reach them and proceed with making the transfer of bond.

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Criminal lawyers are there to simplify your hassles and destroy your worries. Say a family member or someone you love is in jail, this lawyer can help in a number of ways and one of such is the transfer of bail bonds.

These are things to know about transferring of such bonds, the posting of bail in Florida

There are five ways to get freedom

Generally, people can get out of jail in five different ways

  • Release on recognizance: your criminal lawyer might call it ‘ROR.’ This is used when the defendant is charged with a simple case of a misdemeanor and such person does not have a past criminal record. If there is a past record, it should be little or of worthless significance. Usually, court orders ROR but it will not order ROR if there is a doubt that the defendant will appear in all court appearances, or if the defendant serves as a threat to others or victims. The defendant will need to sign an agreement prior to his or her release and no bail will be set.
  • Cash bond: if a person is paying a cash bond, the whole amount of the bond is paid. The most significant benefit of this process is that there are no third party bond companies which will take a 10% premium. In Florida, many of the courts will not accept cash for payment of cash bond. Interestingly, they prefer money orders, credit card, cashier’s checks.
  • Secure bond: It is possible that the defendant and the co-signer cannot afford to pay the set bail in cash at once. In this case, it is best to go for a surety bond as a popular solution. The whole amount of the bail will not be paid; only 10% premium which is the standard of Florida lawmakers will be required for a start. The bond company and with the assistance of the insurance company will guarantee the payment of the rest of the bail even if the defendant did not attend all the court appearances. The co-signer defendant might need to provide collateral before the bail bond company agrees.
  • Unsecured bond: this is like ROR; the defendant gets out of jail with the bond unpaid. With that, the defendant will sign a contract where he agrees to return to perform the trial and other court hearings that arise. There is a clear difference between this and ROR. The court will be the one to set the amount of bail. The defendant – it could be co-signer – will have to pay the bail if he fails to attend the court hearings as expected.
  • This kind of bond is commonly used for bonds with high amounts. To post this kind of bail, the defendant can sign on to the title of the home or another piece of property. The only rule is that the value of the property or home must be equal (or greater) to the amount of the bond in this case. You will need to do a lot of paperwork which is where you need to talk to a criminal lawyer for assistance. If the defendant fails to attend the court appearances as scheduled, the court will have a lien on the said property.

Defendants can get bail

It is true that Florida law allows defendants to get bail. To put it more accurately, the law says that all defendants are entitled or have the freedom to get bail under some conditions except the crimes are punishable by life imprisonment or the crimes committed are capital punishment. At times, you might experience a presumption which favors the release under ‘non-monetary conditions,’ except the prosecutor can show (with proof) that the defendant will not attend the court hearings or show that the defendant is a risk to public safety. Surety bail or cash can always be posted from the jail. To make things easier, a friend or relative can also be reached to make arrangements with a bail bond company.

The cost of bail 

Bail For A Criminal Charge In Florida

If the bond is $1000 or below, the bail bond agent might charge up to $100. If the bail is more than $1000, the premium still remains 10%. In case you are paying cash bail, you will attract no premium. This is because you will not need the services of a bail bond agent; you will post the amount in cash.

The duration of jail 

After an arrest, there are three major things that can determine the length of the period the defendant will spend in jail.

  1. The process usually takes three hours or more and this can even be longer in busier or larger facilities.
  2. If a bail bond company is involved, more hours will go into an interview, preparation of paperwork; hours would go by to complete the process. A criminal lawyer can make the whole process faster.
  3. The seriousness of the offense can also extend or reduce the duration of the length of jail. For simple felonies and misdemeanor, the state has set bail schedules and it could lead to quick release depending on the case. Serious offenses, on the other hand, will require what is called a ‘bond hearing,’ and it usually takes overnight before it is arraigned and bail will be set. If the bail is preset, the duration before release can be as short as 2 or 5 hours.