Which Is Better for a Defendant, a Normal Bail Bond or a Felony Bond?
When a person is arrested and charged with a crime, they have the option to be released from jail before their trial by posting bail. Bail is a financial guarantee to the court that the defendant will return for their scheduled court appearances. There are two main types of bail bonds, normal bail bonds and felony bail bonds. Understanding the difference between the two can be crucial for a defendant’s legal situation.
Normal Bail Bonds
A normal bail bond, also known as a misdemeanor bond, is used in cases where the defendant is charged with a minor crime. These crimes are typically punishable by fines or short-term imprisonment. Examples of misdemeanors include disorderly conduct, petty theft, and driving under the influence (DUI).
When a defendant is charged with a misdemeanor, the bail amount is usually set by a bail schedule, which is a pre-determined list of bail amounts for specific crimes. This makes the bail process for misdemeanors relatively straightforward and quick.
Felony Bail Bonds
Felony bail bonds, on the other hand, are used in cases where the defendant is charged with a more serious crime. These crimes are punishable by long-term imprisonment or even death. Examples of felonies include murder, armed robbery, and drug trafficking.
The bail process for felonies is more complicated than for misdemeanors. The bail amount is set by a judge and can be higher than for misdemeanors. In addition, the defendant may be required to provide collateral or a co-signer for the bond. This is because the court sees the defendant as a higher flight risk.
Choosing the Right Bail Bond
The choice between a normal bail bond and a felony bail bond depends on the severity of the defendant’s crime. A normal bail bond will most likely suffice if the defendant is charged with a misdemeanor. However, if the defendant is charged with a felony, a felony bail bond will be required.
It’s also important to consider the cost of the bail bond. Felony bail bonds tend to be more expensive than normal bail bonds. Additionally, defendants may be required to pay a non-refundable fee to the bail bond agent, which can add to the cost.
In summary, normal bail bonds are used in cases where the defendant is charged with a minor crime, while felony bail bonds are used in cases where the defendant is charged with a more serious crime. Understanding the difference between the two can be crucial for a defendant’s legal situation and help them make the right choice regarding bail.
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