Bail Process

We Can Help Guide You Through the Bail Process

1. Bail Amounts: Bails for individual criminal offenses are usually set pursuant to bail schedule set each year by county judges. A few more serious crimes require the arrested person (defendant) to first appear in court for arraignment to have bail set. Defendants who don't or can't make bail before arraignment (usually 72 hours or less) can request a bail reduction in court, but can run the risk of that request resulting in a bail increase instead of a reduction.

2. Misdemeanor vs. Felony Charges: Misdemeanor crimes are punished by fines and/or incarceration in the county jail for up to one year. Felonies may be punished by fines and/or incarceration in the county jail (if granted probation) or in the state prison.

3. Release on Bail: If a friend or family member calls you from jail and asks you to help arrange his or her bail, please realize he or she is limited in access to telephones, and usually must call you collect. Therefore, in the first call you receive you should get all necessary information; the name and location of the jail, when arrested, what charges, amount of bail, etc. If you can’t help them, get from the arrestee the names and numbers of other persons you can call and let them know of the arrest.

4. If you can and will help the caller, you need to be know how the system works: Bail Bonds - Collateral/Indemnification - Release Time - After Release.