My son is currently on remand waiting trial. We have had a really tricky time over the last year learning about some of the things that he has been doing, but we want to make sure that we support him through the trial so that he can get a fair process. Having family on your side can help the prisoners to have an easier time at trial and can often help the lawyers to provide the strongest possible defence in court. This blog explains how family members can help to make sure that legal process goes smoothly and that the lawyers get all of the resources that they need.
If you are ever arrested, the first thing you will want to do is secure your release from the police jail on bail. Bail typically takes the form of cash or property which is placed in the trust of the court in exchange for your immediate release. The court will use the cash or property as a security deposit which will compel you to appear when summonsed to court. If you fail to appear, the court will seize the money or property and take ownership of it. Before you find yourself in a prison cell, you should familiarise yourself with how the bail process works.
How bail is set
It is the judge, not the prosecutor, who will decide the value of your bail. Before making their decision, the judge will hear from the prosecutor and your lawyer. Your lawyer will usually make the case that you do not represent a flight risk and will attempt to negotiate to reduce the value of your bail bond. Some local jails have a standardised system for deciding on the value of your bail bond in relation to the crime you are accused of committing. If the prosecutor does not contest you being granted bail, you will be immediately released once you have paid the amount stipulated by the court.
How bail is contested
If your lawyer feels that the bail bond has been set at a value which is too high, they can formally contest bail. At this point in proceedings, although you are suspected of committing a crime, you are still innocent. This fact will be used to appeal to the judge that you should be allowed to enjoy your freedom as long as you abide by any other conditions set down by the court.
The conditions which can be attached to bail
If you are granted bail, the court may attach certain conditions to the agreement. These conditions generally include a clause which says if you are suspected of any other crimes while on bail, you will be immediately returned to prison. The judge may also include other conditions, such as asking you to surrender your passport to the court to prevent you from leaving the country or a requirement not to contact other people who are involved in the case, such as a spouse who has accused you of domestic abuse.
If you have any concerns about a criminal charge, you should contact a lawyer today.Share
28 October 2016