How Judges Determine the Cost of Bail in Michigan
No one wants to have to deal with bail bonds, but if you or a loved one are ever faced with jail time, then you will want to know the facts. While the United States Constitution doesn’t specifically guarantee bail to all citizens, the Eighth Amendment does prohibit the imposition of “excessive” fees to arrange discharge from prison. The language of this section is ambiguous enough to allow a measure of leeway for a judge to rule on an amount, but it’s not a complete shot in the dark. If you’ve been arrested for a crime, All American Bail Bond Agency is ready to help so you can regain some sense of normalcy as you await trial. Here’s how the judge comes up with the amount your bondsman needs to pay for your release.
The easiest way for the judge to determine how much bail bonds cost is a published schedule that sets a value for different crimes. Think of this number as a “jumping-off” point, as the figure can be adjusted higher or lower at the judge’s discretion. You can expect the base numbers for felonies to be significantly higher than those for misdemeanors. Here are a few of the factors that could influence the final ruling made in your bail hearing.
It’s common for a defendant to get a smaller sentence because of a clean criminal record, and the same can happen with the amount of bail. If you have a number of arrests in your history, you can expect the judge to be less lenient when determining the cost of your release. Things can get even more complicated if you’re currently in the middle of a trial for a different offense or you have an active warrant in your name, as you could find yourself stuck in jail because of a denied bail request.
When a judge comes up with a bail figure, he or she does so with the general public in mind. The more dangerous you are to the rest of society, the higher the amount will be. The idea behind this factor is that it should be more difficult for hazardous criminals to get out from behind bars. To determine a potential threat level, the judge will take a look at your behavior during the arrest as well as how much of a danger you might be to yourself.
Ties to the Community
If you have strong roots in the local community, many judges figure you’re far less likely to skip out on your bail. Your close relationship with family members or your responsibilities for a small business can often be used as de facto references for your character. When a judge takes these relationships into account, it’s likely you’ll see a reduction in the amount required for your release.
The main condition of your bail is an agreement to return for all required court dates, which is why the judge will assess a higher amount to defendants who are considered to be flight risks. If you were fleeing from the police when you were apprehended or you have the means to easily cross state and international lines, it’s a safe bet you may be asked to pay more before you’re released.
For defendants who have been out on bail before, your record of showing up for hearings and meetings is also fair game. When you have a tendency of missing required dates, don’t be surprised to hear the judge quote a much higher number.
Secure Your Freedom
No matter if you’re guilty or innocent, you need help from an experienced company offering bail bonds in Michigan so you can get back to your family and job. To speak with a member of the All American Bail Bond Agency, contact us online or call 586-770-7411 at any time of the day or night.