3 Factors Judges Use to Determine Bail

15 May 2020
 Categories: Law, Blog


If you are facing criminal charges, you have a lot to worry about. If you suspect you may be arrested or have a warrant issued in your name, it may be important to understand what kind of bail you could be facing. Knowing what your bail entails can help you prepare financially and emotionally for any changes in your life.

Do you wonder on what basis your bail will be set? These are some of the different factors involved in setting your bail.

1. The Nature of the Offense

The type of crime you are accused of committing will play a significant role in the bail you will have to pay to get out of jail after your arraignment. The first step involves looking at whether you face a misdemeanor or a felony, which is more serious.

Then, the judge will take a look at whether the offense was violent or very dangerous. A crime like murder or sexual assault may not allow for any sort of bond because of the fear that the individual will commit another offense or flee to avoid a potential prison sentence.

Of course, somebody who is arrested for a vary minor charge may be released on their own recognizance, no bail needed. Keep in mind that every case is a little different.

2. The Potential for Public Harm

The judge must also consider what harm could come to the public if you are released. If the defendant is accused of a crime that could put public safety at risk, the judge may completely deny bail. This includes the potential for a flight risk to another community, especially one where another offense is possible.

3. The Defendant's History

Of course, the judge will also take a look at your individual history with the criminal court system. They will look at your history and whether these arrests are a pattern for you. The judge will also look for a pattern of escalation or a tendency to skip bail and avoid showing up to court hearings. If you have a lot of connections to the community and you have no criminal history, you may be issued a lower bail.

Lack of Financial Resources Doesn't Have to Keep You Behind Bars

If you are awarded bail but cannot afford it, you are not stuck. You actually have more options than you might think. For instance, you can benefit from speaking a bail bond professional who can help you better understand federal bail bonds.