Criminal Justice Information Center: Bail and Bond Explained

Bond and Bail is a right under Michigan Law

If you are charged with a crime, you are entitled to bond except for certain kinds of crimes such as capital crimes like murder.
Michigan Law MCL765.6 provides that law, a person accused of a criminal offense is entitled to bail that is not excessive. The court in fixing the amount of bail must consider and state on the record the following factors:

  • The seriousness of the offense charged.
  • The protection of the public.
  • The previous criminal record and the dangerousness of the person accused.
  • The probability or improbability of the person accused appearing at the trial of the cause.

The Judge will make the determination of what bond is appropriate after considering whether you are a danger to the community and whether you present a risk of flight .
Depending on the crime, whether you are in custody, your past criminal history, and whether you have failed to appeared for a Court proceeding in the past, the Judge has the discretion to set different kinds of bonds.

Personal Recognizance or PR Bond
If you have no criminal history, retained an attorney and voluntarily given yourself up, the Judge may impose a Personal Recognizance or PR bond. That means that while a bond amount is set, say $5000, you don’t have to actually put up any money. If you fail to show up for the next hearing, the Court will revoke that bond and will come after you for the money.

10% Bond
The Court could also establish a 10% bond. That means, if you pay the Court 10% of the total bond, you will be released from jail. You can put this money up yourself or get a bail bondsman to do it. So, if the Judge sets a bond of $5000, 10%, then you need to come up with $500. Once the case is settled, you get the money back minus a small processing fee. If you get a bail bondsman to put up the money, you would have to come up with about $125 plus a processing fee and pay that amount to the bondsman. But in that case, the bondsman keeps the money after your case is settled. And because the bondsman is on the hook for the balance of the bond amount, if you fail to show up, depending on how much money is involved, expect some very tough looking guys to hunt you down and turn you in.

Cash or Surety Bond
The Judge could also impose a cash surety bond. That means you must come up with all the money or be able to put up some collateral that is equal to the bond amount. If you put up all the money, you get it back after the case is settled. In the case where the bond is set at $5000, you would need to put up the full $5000. You can also use a bail bondsman who would guarantee the money that would cost you 25% of the $5000, but the bondsman would keep that money after the case is settled.

The Judge may also impose certain bond conditions
When you are on bond, the Judge will likely impose other conditions. These include not engaging in any criminal conduct, not using drugs or alcohol, random drug or alcohol testing if the crime you are related to drugs or alcohol, imposing a no contact order if the crime was assaultive or involved domestic violence, not leaving the State, or you may even be placed on a tether. It’s important to follow these conditions. If you fail to abide with Court’s order, generally the Judge will revoke your bond and you will find yourself in jail with no hope of being freed until your case is resolved.

The Law Office of James G. Schmier, PLLC is a Criminal Defense, Drunk Driving DUI and Family Law and Divorce law firm and provides legal representation in Wayne County, Oakland County, Macomb County and throughout Michigan including these Michigan cities:

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