Why Is Bail So Important For The Defendant In Florida’s Criminal Justice System?
You may be generally familiar with how bail works in a criminal case, but these concepts take on new importance if you have recently been arrested. Under Florida’s statutes on criminal procedure, bail and bond are general terms used to describe pretrial release. The basic arrangement is that the defendant deposits cash or a surety bond with the court in exchange for remaining free while the case is pending. Bail acts as a sort of insurance policy against the person fleeing from the jurisdiction because it is forfeited if he or she leaves the state.
While the point is to ensure you come back for court appearances, there are significant advantages to being out of jail and not in legal custody. It is critical to retain a Florida criminal defense lawyer for assistance with your bond arrangement, which will be an issue raised during your arraignment or first court appearance. Some information on the benefits of pretrial release is also useful.
Participate in Your Defense: Probably one of the most important advantages is that you are able to provide support for your attorney with respect to your defense. You may only focus on the freedoms, but posting bail can actually have an impact on the outcome of your case. When you are not incarcerated pending trial, you play an active role as part of your defense team by:
- Helping collect evidence;
- Communicating with witnesses that you know; and,
- Contributing to strategy when appropriate.
Continue with Employment: Being out on bail enables you to get back to work and earn wages, so you will still be able to provide for your household. Plus, there will be legal costs associated with your defense. If you were in police custody throughout the pretrial process, you miss out on income – while bills are piling up in your absence. Plus, for many people, their career is a source of personal satisfaction that can uplift you during difficult times.
Family and Community: Though you know your trial date will arrive, you can live a somewhat normal life when out on bail. You will be living at home with loved ones instead of being forced to talk to them with a phone and behind glass.
Grounds for Denying Pretrial Release: Not all suspects in a criminal case will qualify to be free on bond pending the trial date. The court will deny bail when the person is accused of certain violent offenses and crimes that affect the public safety. A judge is also unlikely to grant pretrial release for someone who has a history of violent felonies or who has skipped bail in the past.
Learn More About Bond and Pretrial Release from a South Florida Criminal Defense Attorney
If you are facing criminal charges in Florida, your top priority should be getting legal representation for bail, defenses, and all other issues that arise during the case. To learn more, please contact Linkhorst & Hockin, P.A. You can call 561-626-8880 or go online to schedule a consultation at our offices in Jupiter, FL.