When a person has been arrested in Austin, Texas and other locations there are many reasons why it is important to arrange a jail release to get out of jail as quickly as possible.
- To reduce pressure to accept a plea bargain;
- To avoid jail time when none is likely to be imposed;
- To be able to freely work with defense counsel in preparing a defense; and
- To continue living one’s life in vital ways such as keeping a job, continuing one’s education, continuing to care for one’s family, etc…
The United States and Texas Constitutions guarantee everyone the right to have a reasonable bail set in their case so that a person who has been accused of an offense, but still is presumed to be innocent, will have a chance to defend oneself and to be guaranteed due process, which includes the right to a fair trial. There are several ways to arrange a pretrial jail release including personal bonds, cash bonds, security bonds.
When a person is arrested, almost always a judge will set a bail that requires paying a certain amount of money. When this money is paid, it is called a cash bond. After the person accused makes all court appearances required for his case, that money is refunded, minus a small fee.
A personal bond, also referred to as a personal recognizance bond or a “PR bond”, is a judge’s decision to release a person from jail based on the accused’s promise to appear in court whenever summoned to do so. Personal bonds often tend to be the least expensive way to secure a person’s release from jail in Austin, Texas, before trial since they do not require posting money with the jail to be held as security. In Travis County in Austin, the Pretrial Services office will typically interview all persons arrested and held in a Travis County Jail and then make recommendations to judges regarding whether to grant or deny personal bonds for jail release. In order to qualify for one, generally a person must show they have established connections in the county, will appear in court whenever directed to do so, and do not constitute a hazard to the community.
If a person cannot afford to post a cash bond, or secure a personal bond, the accused may hire a surety who will charge a fee to guarantee payment of the bail amount if the person accused fails to appear in court as required. Typically sureties will charge from ten to twenty per cent of the full bail amount. The money paid to the surety is a fee that they charge for this service and is usually nor refunded when the case is concluded. This tends to be the most expensive way to secure a release from jail, however, when a Personal Recognizance bond or a cash bond cannot be arranged, it is usually much better to spend this money than sit in jail for months or years awaiting trial.
If you would like to arrange for someone you know to be released from jail, feel free to call us at any time at 512-474-6484.