Getting Out Of Jail: What Friends Need To Know

When a loved one has been booked into jail, you might be their only chance at freedom. When the call comes, it's great to know that you can help them. Find out how to help them get out of jail by reading below.

Get Out Using Own Recognizance

In some cases, your friend could be released on their own recognizance. You won't know until they take part in an arraignment, however. This meeting deals with bail issues soon after an arrest and if your friend meets the standards, they are free to go. However, they must obey the same rules as someone released on bail. Those likely to be released on their own recognizance include first-time offenders and those arrested for minor crimes that live in the area. If this happens, you might only need to offer them a ride home.

Sign a Signature Bond

Like an own recognizance release, a signature bond allows a defendant to be released without having to pay any bail money. However, if the defendant fails to attend court later or violates other bail conditions, they are held accountable for paying the full cost of the bail as ordered by the court.

Pay the Courts

Bail, once decided on at the arrangement, can be very expensive. The amount charged varies with the seriousness of the crime and the characteristics of the defendant. Lower bail costs are associated with minor crimes and good criminal records. However, for serious crimes like theft and assault, if bail is available, it can be thousands of dollars.

Purchase a Bail Bond

Bail bonds are a less-expensive alternative to paying that expensive bail to the court. Here is how bail bonds work:

  • How much less expensive? Bail bonds are sold at a percentage of the original bail cost. The percentage varies but it's always a lot less than the bail imposed by the court. For instance, if the full bail is $10,000 and the bail bonding company charges a percentage of 15%, you only pay $1,500 to get your friend out of jail.
  • Bail bonding companies are not affiliated with the court system, but they work closely with them to get people released quickly and efficiently. They are often located near courthouses and jails.
  • Once you learn where your friend is being held and the amount of the bail, phone a bail bonding company and ask about the cost of bailing them out. You must appear in person, in most cases, to arrange for your friend's bail.

Phone a bail bonding company and learn more about getting your friend out of jail quickly and cheaply. For more information on bail bonds, contact a professional near you.