California Law entitles a person to receive bail so they can be released from jail until their Court date. Bail is available for all crimes except cases of capital murder.
Setting of Bail Amount
Local County officials set the amount of bail based on a presumptive bail schedule that is required depending on the case involved. For example, the bail for a domestic violence case is set by Penal Code 273.5, which is $50,000. Depending on other factors, such as great bodily injury or prior convictions, this bail amount can be increased or “enhanced.” An attorney can assist in lowering this presumptive bail, and may even be able to have it eliminated and have their client released on their own recognizance.
Release on “Own Recognizance”
To request to be released on your “own recognizance” (i.e., “OR”), a motion must be filed with the Court who will be hearing the alleged criminal charges against you. Being released on your own recognizance is simply a promise that you’ll appear in Court for your hearing, and it eliminates the requirement for you to post bail.
When granting an OR the Judge will take into consideration certain factors such as existance or lack of prior criminal record, how long you’ve lived in the area, family, property, employment, and other ties to the community, and if you’ve had any prior court appearance failures.
Motion to Reduce Bail
Another motion your attorney can request is one to reduce your bail. In addition to the factors used to decide on an OR, the Judge will also consider whether the alleged criminal charges against you include violence or other aggravating factors in deciding whether to grant reduced bail. The main concern a Judge will use in their decision is whether “public safety” will be compromised if bail is reduced in order to release you until your Court appearance.
According to California Penal Code, public safety is paramount when changing/reducing a person’s bail from the scheduled presumptive amount. Another consideration is whether the person requesting reduced bail or an OR is a flight risk. If there is a chance they are a flight risk (i.e., not showing up for the appointed Court appearance), neither reduced bail nor OR will be granted. In many cases, the court will also require the person to give up their passport or visa. Many factors weigh heavily in the Court’s mind when evaluating bail and OR requests.
If you have been arrested for an alleged crime, it is imperative to acquire a criminal defense attorney such as Sevens Legal, APC, immediately to assist you with the complicated and confusing process of bail and motion for an OR. A quick release can save thousands of dollars in bail and being able to be released prior to and during trial. Contact Sevens Legal, APC, today for a free consultation.
Criminal Defense Attorneys
3555 4th Ave.
San Diego, CA 92103
Phone: (619) 297-2800