Missing Your Court Date: How Being Absent Affects You and Your Bond
Being arrested is a scary and likely overwhelming experience as is the proceeding court appearances and rulings. Unfortunately, you have no choice but to go through the process. Sure, you can argue that you have the choice as far as free will is concerned, but choosing to skip court proceedings will only make the situation worse for you and your loved ones. Any Michigan bail bond company, including the All American Bail Bond Agency, will warn you against missing your court date, and you can be confident that there are ramifications for absenteeism, whether intentional or not.
Therefore, it is in your best interest to memorize, write down and set a reminder for any of your court-mandated appearances. There is no denying that fear is a motivating factor in avoidance, and it is understandable to be afraid, whether you are guilty or not. However, as you currently find yourself in this situation, it is best to play by the rules. If you choose not to play by the rules and skip court hearings, then you will be held accountable for your actions in a couple of ways.
A missed court date is a serious offense, and your legal troubles will be compounded. While fear is the likely cause of such decisions, a court will penalize you regardless of the validity of the initial charges. Your bail will likely be revoked, and you will be remanded into custody for the extent of the trial. If your lawyers can convince a judge that you learned your lesson, your bail will likely be higher due to the flight attempt. Also, keep in mind that skipping a mandated court appearance is a new charge, meaning that if the initial charges are dismissed, you still face the additional charges.
If you used the services of a bail bond company to get out of jail, then it is the responsibility of that company to recoup the full bail amount and send a bail bondsman to apprehend you. Before missing a court date, remember that you are currently only on the hook for the initial payment to the bond company – $100 or 10 percent of the bail amount. If you skip, you are responsible for the entire bail amount. If a loved one put up collateral or organized the bond, then they are responsible for payment. Also, keep in mind that you will eventually be apprehended and returned to face the original charges as well as the new charges for missing your court appearance.
Leniency and Responsibility
Some jurisdictions do offer a bit of leniency if you miss your court date, but you must contact the court and your bondsman as quickly as possible. While leniency may be provided, it may only buy you a day or two, not weeks or months. There are times when real emergencies, like hospitalizations, result in a missed court appearance, but that is not the norm. If you are experiencing such a crisis, contact your attorney, bond company and the court to disclose the issue. Your attorney may be able to ask for a continuance, and your bond company may be able to secure your bail and bond, meaning that it will not be revoked.
While an arrest and the concurrent legal proceedings are intimidating and possibly fear-inducing, it is essential to make all of your court appearances. If you don’t make all appearances because of an emergency or by choice, then rectify the situation quickly by reaching out to a Michigan bail bonds company. For any more questions about bond responsibilities or to secure a bond for yourself or a loved one contact All American Bail Bond Agency at (586) 770-7411.