All defendants in the United States have a constitutional right to bail unless the judge can provide a rationale for denying it. The right to bail was granted to all those suspected of a crime in the 8th Amendment, with an underlying consideration for possible innocence of those who’d been arrested.
But what if the bail amount is too high for anyone to pay? This is a problem that many people have raised in the past, claiming that only the rich can enjoy bail while the less fortunate are left in jail. Anyone who makes this claim forgets that it’s possible to get the bail reduced as well.
What is the Purpose of Bail?
Whenever someone’s arrested under suspicion, that isn’t an admission of their guilt. It just shows that the state may have found someone who might have broken the law, and they have brought them in under these suspicions. The only way anyone is ever said to be unquestionably guilty is when a court declares them guilty of a crime.
You must remember, though, that you still have an obligation to attend all of your legal proceedings that will establish your legal status (innocent or guilty). Bail was introduced as a way of making sure that people would attend their hearings or risk losing money if they failed—sort of like an insurance policy. With the introduction of bail, people no longer had to spend excessive time in jail even though they weren’t technically guilty yet.
How is Bail Decided?
In the event that you’re arrested, the authorities have a legal duty to present you in front of a judge for a bail hearing. That’s where your bail is decided.
The bail amounts for crimes differ across each state, but the court has the authority to set whatever bail amount it feels necessary. When you’re brought in front of the judge, the judge assesses whether you present enough of a risk to deny you bail—they do so keeping in mind the following factors:
- The seriousness of the offense
- Whether you’re a flight risk
- Whether you’re a threat to the public
If they decide to grant you bail, they’ll set an amount that’s “indispensable with respect to the delivery of justice”—that’s the lynchpin here.
Getting Your Bail Reduced
After your initial bail hearing, you can appeal the decision passed by the bail hearing judge. During this hearing, you argue that the amount set by the court is unreasonable and excessive to qualify as the minimum amount required to ensure that justice is delivered. The court must provide a valid rationale for setting the amount, and if you can prove that their reasoning is flawed, your bail amount is reduced.
Need Bail Bonds in Florida?
Get in touch with the people at Lee Calhoun Bail Bonds today. We’ve worked for 15 years in Bradford County bail bonds services area and have reputation as one of the best bail bond service providers in region. Call us today for more information on our bail bond services in Starke, Florida.