There are more than 10 million arrests made in the United States every year. That amounts to one every three seconds.
Most people arrested can make a deposit, called “bail,” to gain release from jail until the time of their trial. This is often secured through a “bond,” where a company puts up the bail amount in exchange for a fee paid by the detainee (or someone they know).
How long can jail hold you after a bond is posted? The answer to that question depends on certain variables particular to each case. The good news is that, once you understand what those are, you can better anticipate when release should occur.
This article covers the main factors that can influence this process. Keep reading to find out how they might apply to your case.
How to Post Bail?
Not all arrests involve the ability to post bail. In many cases, the court will deny bail based on certain circumstances. These include violent or other serious crimes, or if the court suspects the defendant is a serious flight risk.
In cases where bail is set, there is a bail hearing. The judge considers the circumstances of the case and determines an appropriate bail amount.
All states have laws that lay out a window of time from the arrest when a bail hearing must take place. Some have a specific duration (usually 24 to 48 hours), while others simply say a “reasonable amount of time.” Regardless, every person arrested in the United States must be granted this opportunity (even if bail is ultimately denied).
If you feel that the amount of bail set is unfair based on the circumstances of your arrest, you can appeal it. Note that, in these cases, the prosecutor has the right to request and the judge can decide on a higher bail amount. It is important to consider this risk before appealing a set bail amount.
Once the defendant shows up in court, the bail contract is considered fulfilled. At this time, the court will refund the bail amount to whoever paid it, such as the detainee’s family or the bail bonds agency.
How Much Do Bail Bonds Cost?
Bail amounts can run between several hundred and millions of dollars, depending on the crime and other circumstances. In general, the more serious the crime, the higher the bail amount will be.
Also, the judge may take into account other circumstances, such as whether the individual is a flight risk, when determining the bail amount. However, the federal government prohibits “excessive bail” under the Eight Amendment, and states often have laws that mirror this (though North Carolina does not).
Many states also set limits on how much bail bonds can cost. This is typically a percentage of the bail amount. For instance, in North Carolina, the total bail bond cannot exceed 15 percent of the bail, under state law.
Conditions of Bail
Beyond paying the bail amount, the court could put in place added restrictions on the defendant. These could include electronic monitoring or occasional online, telephone, or in-person check-ins. It also is common, with certain accusations, for the court to restrict the defendant from traveling out of state until the time of their trial.
In cases involving driving under the influence, the court might require the person to install an ignition interlock on their vehicle. For other cases involving substance abuse, the court may make the individual complete a mental health examination and/or substance abuse treatment as a condition of bail. In other instances, the released person may have to surrender any weapons they possess to law enforcement.
How Long Can Jail Hold You After Bond Is Posted?
In most cases, a defendant gets released from jail between 30 minutes and four hours after posting bail. There are several things that take place during this time that influence the duration.
One is paperwork that the overseeing officer must complete. They also will check on existing warrants or other legal issues that could hinder release (although these are usually identified before the bail hearing).
Other factors that can delay the process as well. For instance, if there are a large number of detainees being processed during that same timeframe, it could take longer. Likewise, if there are limited police staff when bail gets posted, it could take longer for them to complete the process.
To get a more specific answer to the question “How long can jail hold you after bond is posted?” we have to look at specific state laws that lay out individual rights. Some states require release within four hours after posting bail. Others have no limit but specify a “reasonable” timeframe.
A final thing that could impact how long you wait after posting bail is the bail bonds service you choose. Reputable ones will have a great deal of experience navigating this complex process. They will be able to make all the necessary legal arrangements stipulated in the bail, so that you can secure release as quickly as possible.
Can You Post Bail in the Middle of the Night?
Yes, in almost every location you can post bail any time of day. However, if you are going through a bail bondsman, you will need to find one that is available 24 hours a day. Doing so could expedite the process, ensuring your loved one gets released quicker.
Find Bail Bonds Near You
Now that you have an answer to “How long can jail hold you after bond is posted?” you can plan accordingly. Remember that your loved one has rights, but it is up to you to ensure that they get enforced. This is where a reputable bail bonds agency can help.
Amistad Bail and Immigration Bonds brings decades of experience in the bail bond industry, and we specialize in immigration-related cases. Our focus is to employ strategies that get your loved ones out of jail as quickly as possible. Reach out to us today to discuss bail bonds services or to get answers to how long can jail hold you after posting bail.