When arrested, your life is momentarily focused on the impact of your incarceration. Your thoughts zero in on how jail will affect your family, work, and daily activities. More importantly, can you secure your freedom before your trial to attend to these issues?
Bail bonds offer a pre-trial conditional release from jail. It is a momentary reprieve to avoid incarceration before the conclusion of your case without a significant financial burden to you or your loved ones. Therefore, if you or a loved one is arrested, contact the Buellton bail bond agents at Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds. We offer reliable and affordable bail services 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Understanding Bail Bonds
First, it is vital to define specific terms, namely bail and bail bonds, to understand what bail bonds are and how they work.
California’s criminal justice system allows arrestees to secure their release before trial. This release is secured with court-imposed assurance referred to as bail. Bail is the sum a court sets, and the defendant pays as an assurance that he/she will show up in court on the prescribed dates. Failure to make court appearances will result in you losing the sum posted as bail.
Judges take into consideration several factors before setting bail. Critical among them is the severity of the crime. Buellton judges are guided by Santa Barbara County’s bail schedule when setting bail. The judges will then factor in additional factors presented by the prosecution and defense attorneys and determine the final amount.
Bails have a high value not affordable by most defendants. In addressing this challenge, Bail dealers offer bail bonds to help secure a defendant’s release. Therefore, bail agents post the bail on behalf of defendants in return for a non-refundable service charge. Most Buellton bail agents charge a 10% fee for a bail bond.
Bail Bond Process in Buellton
After an arrest, you will be booked by the officers at the jail. Your details will be recorded and fed into the criminal database. Expect the officers to record your name, date of birth, height, the offense you are arrested for, a mugshot, and any other information that uniquely identifies you.
You should be arraigned in court within 48 hours following your arrest. At the arraignment, your prosecutors will present your charge sheet, and the judge decides on the bail to set. While judges refer to bail schedules to determine bail proportional to the crime, the law allows them to exercise discretion to arrive at an appropriate value. This, therefore, means that the bail can be higher or lower than the value the bail schedule prescribes.
The law allows defendants to challenge the bail set. You can request a hearing on your bail within two days after the arraignment with the help of your attorney. During this hearing, the judge, in exercising his/her discretion, can retain the bail as is, increase, or decrease it. Additionally, he/she can order for you to be released on your own recognizance.
Judges consider several issues before deciding whether to modify your bail, that is, increase or reduce your bail. A judge will lower your bail if the circumstances are in your favor, as presented by your attorney. Conversely, bail could be increased if the issues as presented by prosecutors adversely affect you. The factors include:
- The severity of the offense
- Your criminal history
- Alleged threats made to a victim
- The use of drugs or weapons in the crime
- The severity of the injuries the victim(s) suffered
- The danger you pose to the community’s safety upon release
- Your connection to the Buellton community, including business interest or properties, and
- The likelihood of you appearing in court in future
A judge can also deny you bail. In most cases, bail is denied if you violate your parole or probation. Additionally, you will be denied bail if there is a warrant for your arrest from another jurisdiction or you commit another offense while out on bail.
Release on Your Own Recognizance (O.R. Release)
You can be released out of jail without a bail requirement and on the promise that you will honor all your court dates. This release is known as release on your own recognizance or an O.R. release.
O.R. releases are issued if the offense is a non-violent misdemeanor and if there is strong evidence the defendant has strong ties with the community. Additionally, an O.R. release is also based on a defendant's strong ties in the community.
You will be required to adhere to the following conditions as part of your release. The conditions include:
- Abiding by court-imposed conditions — These conditions are issued based on the circumstances of your case
- Waiver of extradition should you leave and are arrested outside California
- Obtaining the court’s consent before leaving California
- Your age and health
Posting Bail Using Buellton Bail Bond Agents
Once the bail is set, you will sign a bail agreement before the bail agent makes bail on your behalf. The contract has, among other details, particular critical sections. By signing the contract, you will agree to the terms.
Most bail agencies in Buellton charge 10% of the bail’s value as a non-refundable fee. The amount should be paid up-front. However, the rate is an average charge for most state offenses. However, bail for federal crimes is significantly higher, with bail agents charging a fee of between 15% to 20%. It is crucial to ascertain the going rate before settling on a bail agent.
Bail companies require assurances that you will attend your court hearings. Further, they will require collateral to guarantee the bond, which the cosigner will provide.
Bail agents allow for properties, jewelry, vehicles, paintings, and any valuable item as collateral. Should you fail to appear in court as required, the bail bondsman will repossess the asset and dispose of it to recover the bond forfeited by the court.
Failing to Appear After a Pretrial Release
Failing to appear in court results in adverse consequences. This action is referred to as jumping or skipping bail.
The most immediate consequence is bail forfeiture. If you used a bail bondsman to secure your pre-trial release, the bondsman will lose the value of the bond and will repossess the asset in the contract to sell it off and recover the value forfeited by the court. If you used your property to post bail, the court would assume ownership of the property.
Forfeiture can be reversed if you appear before the court within 180 days of the forfeiture order with valid reasons explaining your no-show. Some of the reasons a judge will consider include illness, being involved in an accident, or being arrested in another jurisdiction.
A judge will then proceed to issue a bench warrant for your arrest. Police officers will then have the authority to arrest you at your next encounter with them. Additionally, the warrant can also be enforced by bounty hunters who are incentivized with the share of the bail he/she will receive after turning you in.
Failure to appear in court also results in additional charges. You could face misdemeanor penalties for failing to appear in court if your current charge was a misdemeanor. On the other hand, felony penalties will be imposed if you are facing charges for a felony offense.
Benefits of Using Bail Bond Services
When you or a loved one is arrested, the process is unsettling. An expedited release comes to mind, which is the key benefit bail bond services offer. There are additional advantages you should take into account, including the following.
An arrest can occur anytime, whether during the day or night. You could get in touch with a bail agent before your arraignment. A reliable agent will explain to you the bail process and what to expect, including the estimated value of the bond with respect to the crime you or a loved one faces. Most agents operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. So you can engage the company after the arrest, and the guidance the agency offers should ease the situation.
Additionally, Buellton bail agents could also link you with reputable attorneys that are sure to be of great assistance in fighting the criminal charges.
At Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds, we extend convenience further by providing favorable payment plans. We accept online and credit card payments as well as wire transfers. If you cannot pay the fee all at once, worry not. Our team will customize a payment option for you.
Bail agencies only require you to part with 10% of the bail. This fee is far less than paying the full value of the bail or using your property to post bail. Additionally, by using bail agents, you avoid liquidating your assets, refinancing your mortgage, or using other financially-consequential options to secure your pre-trial release.
Bail Bond Services Save on Time
Consolidating finances, especially on short notice, is challenging. Arrests are unplanned events. Couple that with the large sums required as bail, and the situation becomes significantly problematic. You or a loved one could spend more time in jail before raising the bail sum.
However, with bail agencies, you can make bail after your arraignment or the hearing to challenge the bail set in your arraignment. A bail agent’s understanding of the judicial system, the agencies' extensive contacts with other professionals in the bail process, and the bail sum ready to be posted are advantages you secure when using bail bonds. This means that your release is fast-tracked, and you can attend to your responsibilities almost immediately.
Engaging with members in a criminal judicial system can be frustrating. Most operate with the assumption that an arrestee is guilty. These officers are less inclined to help you navigate the system with ease. This frustration, coupled with the negative emotional experience arrests cause, makes it easy to make decisions that could lead to you or a loved one spending more time behind bars than is necessary.
Buellton bail bondsmen, especially the team at Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds, are professionals, and we understand how difficult the situation is. Further, during a situation like this, what you need is solutions. Our agents are ready to do that.
Bail Bond Services Offer Peace of Mind
Being in a confined space with metal bars reminding you of your restricted movement is not at all comforting. It is also challenging to make well-thought-out decisions while worrying about your situation. It also follows that any interaction with your attorney in preparing your defense will not receive your full attention.
When bail bond agents secure your release, the conditional reprieve helps ease your state of mind. Therefore, you are better positioned to prepare for trial. Further, you will continue working to pay for your attorney fees, a situation that is far better from having to worry about the attorney fees in lockup.
Spending Time With Your Family
Bail allows you to reconnect with your family and spend time with them as you prepare for trial. You, therefore, do not have to worry about missing your family’s milestones on account of you remaining in custody before your trial.
Buellton Jail and Courthouse Information
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office
Phone Number: (805) 686-8150
Santa Barbara County Jail
Phone Number: (805) 681-4260
Superior Court Of California
Phone Number: (805) 686-5040
Contact a Buellton Bail Bond Agent Near Me
If you or a loved one have been arrested and are looking for bail bond services, or you would like to consult more on bail services, feel free to contact our Buellton team. At Mr Nice Guy Bail Bonds, we take pride in offering reliable, professional, and round-the-clock bail services to our clients. Get in touch with us at 844-400-2245 for a free consultation.