Spending a night in a police detention hall or jail is a nightmare to most people. When a police officer arrests you or your friend for any criminal allegations, you must take the necessary actions to obtain your freedom without delay. One of the primary decisions you will make will involve posting bail.
That is where experienced bail bond agents at Cali Bail Bonds come in to help you reduce some of the stress involved in obtaining this form of pretrial release. Wherever you are in Whittier, California, we will post the required bail bond on your behalf to save you from having to use your own money to obtain freedom during these emotional and stressful moments following an arrest.
Becoming a Defendant in the Criminal Justice System
You become a defendant in the criminal justice system when the police arrest and detain you for violating a criminal law. That means you have to prove your innocence through every stage of the prosecution process to avoid possible harsh consequences of your alleged case's judgment.
Typically, probable cause is all a police officer needs to arrest and detain you for violating a law. Under the law, probable cause is typically a reasonable suspicion that you’re about to violate a law or liable for committing a particular crime. Even if an officer has no arrest warrant, he/she can arrest you as long as there is probable cause to do so.
You must cooperate with the officers when they tell you that you are under arrest to avoid making your alleged charge severe and additional charges of resisting an arrest. However, during the arrest, you should remember you have the following legal rights:
- Right to stay silent or quiet.
- Right to stay free from illegal or unlawful searches
- Right to seek a legal assistance
Following an arrest, the arresting police officers will take you to their station for the booking and processing procedure. Booking and processing is an administrative procedure that involves:
- Recording of your vital information, for example, your name and the alleged offense.
- Mugshot taking
- Confiscation of your clothes and other properties
- Fingerprint taking
- Health screening
- Complete or thorough body search
After this administrative procedure, the arresting officers may allow you to leave after signing a citation to appear in court later if your alleged case is minor. If that is impossible due to the nature and severity of the alleged charge, you will stay in jail before your case's bail hearing.
Since your case judgment doesn't happen immediately after an arrest, you should seek ways to obtain your freedom before your case's trial hearing or judgment. Posting bail is one of the ways you can obtain your freedom following an arrest.
Determining Your Eligibility to Post Bail and the Total Amount You Should Pay
Bail is generally the sum of money the court requires a defendant to pay following an arrest to obtain his/her freedom as the alleged case continues. Since you’re not guilty of the alleged misdemeanor or felony offense yet, the court should allow you to post bail to obtain the deserved freedom.
Determining your eligibility to post bail and the total amount of money you should pay out as bail will occur at your initial court appearance/the arraignment hearing. If you have a defense attorney, he/she can attend this court hearing to convince the judge you are an excellent candidate for this form of pretrial release.
The judge presiding over this case will generally consider the following factors when setting your bail after an arrest:
- Your ability to pay the required total bail amount
- Your criminal record
- Public safety
- Severity and sophistication of the alleged offense
- The possibility of availing yourself in court for future court proceedings or hearings
During the bail hearing, your attorney has a chance to ask the judge to reduce your bail if it is too high or a release on Own Recognizance. If you are eligible for release on Own Recognizance (O.R), you should use that opportunity because you will not need money to obtain your deserved freedom.
Remember, during this hearing, the judge has the authority to decide to keep you in police custody without bail if you have a history of violating probation conditions or you are a threat to the safety and wellness of your community and the public.
Paying Your Required Bail for the Alleged Charge
Once the court determines the total bail you will pay for your alleged case, you can do so through any of the following ways:
Using Cash Bail
To obtain your release through cash bail, you must deposit the required full bail amount with the arresting agency or the court's clerk. Depending on the rules and policies of the court presiding over your alleged case, you can post cash bail using any of the means listed below:
- Personal check
- Money order
- Bank cashier's check
- Traveler's check
Beware, the court may hold your release after paying your cash bail if the judge reasonably believes that you obtained the money illegally or fraudulently. In that case, the judge may schedule another hearing to resolve this issue. It will be up to you to convince the judge beyond a reasonable doubt that your cash bail money was legitimate during this hearing.
Using a Property Bond
Since not every person in police custody can afford cash for emergencies like this to secure their release, the court will also allow you or a friend to post your bail using a property as collateral. Mostly the value of the property you will use as collateral to act as security for your freedom must be twice your required full bail amount.
That means you may have to give out your vehicle or house as collateral if you cannot afford the required full cash bail. Using a property bond is risky because the court will forfeit your property if you are unavailable for future court hearings as required, meaning you will lose your ownership of the property.
Due to this risk, most people who are in police custody will not use their property to secure their freedom.
Using a Bail Bond
Also known as surety bond, a bail bond can work out in your favor if you do not have sufficient cash or an equivalent property to post bail. Most people find using a bail bond the best reliable alternative to secure their freedom after an arrest because you don't have to break a neck to pay the necessary bail amount for your alleged charge.
A bail bond is an organized court payment by a bail bondsman or agent on behalf of a defendant in police custody to act as surety for his/her freedom before his/her case verdict. To obtain your freedom using a bail bond, you must contact a professional and reliable bail bondsman or agent within your location as soon as possible.
The agent you will choose will prepare the necessary paperwork on your behalf to make the bail process smooth as possible. To secure your freedom, the agent will sign a contract agreeing to pay the full bail amount if you are unavailable for future court proceedings as required. In return, you will pay a non-refundable fee of 10% of the full bail amount (premium).
If you are unavailable for your alleged case hearing after posting bail, the court will forfeit or sell your property. The agent may want collateral from you or a relative to act as security to avoid these losses if you are unavailable for your case hearing.
Since a bail bond agent or company will put a huge sum of money on the line for you to obtain your freedom, they may require more from you to ensure your future court appearances. For instance, they may require you to make regular check-ins by phone or consent to have someone monitor you while you are out on bail.
When you show up in court as required and comply with your bail conditions, the bail bond agent will receive their money back.
Finding a Reliable and Credible Bail Bondsman or Agent Following an Arrest
How soon you will obtain your freedom after an arrest and booking process will depend on the credibility of the bail bondsman you will choose to post your bail. To find a credible bail company or agent without a hassle, you should consider the following tips:
The Agent or Company Experience
Although every professional was once an amateur, you should avoid bail bond services of any amateur expert. Look for an experienced bail bondsman or agent to be certain of prompt services during this time of need.
The Company or Agent Licensing Credentials
In this field full of scammers and mediocre experts, it is crucial to know whether your potential bail bondsman or agent is licensed or not before making any significant commitment. A dedicated and professional bail bond agent will satisfy legal requirements like this before commencing with this business.
The Agent or Company Reputation
The reputation of your prospective bail bond agent will give you a hint of what to expect once you choose to work with them to post your bail. Also, look for a company with positive reviews and comments from prospective clients on their social media platforms and website.
Positive comments from past clients will give you hopes of the best and reliable services by experts who understand this process's ins and outs to obtain your freedom as soon as possible. Your friends' recommendations may also be vital to narrow down your choices as you look for the best bail bond agent in your area.
The Agent or Company Availability
A credible and dependable bail bond agent understands the need to be available for its clients 24/7 because an arrest can occur at any time. If you are under arrest for drunk driving at night, the company you will choose to hire must be available to provide you immediate bail bond services that you need.
When you contact your potential bail bond agent and hear automated voice messages instead of a live person, you should find another available company or agent.
Common Mistakes That Defendants Make When Posting Bail and After Posting the Required Bail
When you are in custody, it is easy to make errors and avoidable mistakes when posting bail, affecting your eligibility for this form of pretrial release. Even after posting bail, you might make a mistake that will send you back to jail. Here are some common mistakes that you must avoid during the bail process and after posting bail:
Providing Misleading or Wrong Address
When you seek the services of a bail bond agent to help you with the bail process, you must provide them with correct information, including your legal names and address. Ensure you double-check the address you will give your bail bond agent to ensure it's error-free because any error can affect your eligibility for this form of pretrial release.
Traveling While Out On Bail
Once you are out on bail, it is vital to understand your travel restrictions and limitations. Most people who are on bail will have to comply with particular travel restrictions. Take some time to read and review your bail restrictions and conditions with your agent or attorney after release.
If you’re unsure of your obligations after posting a bail bond, you should consult your bail bond agent for guidance.
Court and Jail Information You May Need If You or Friend is in Police Custody in Whittier, California
The following information will be helpful if you want to bail your friend in Whittier, California, out of jail:
13200 Penn Street
Whittier, Ca, 90602
7339 South Painter Avenue
Whittier, California 90602
Find a Bail Bond Agent Near Me
To find more information on how bail bond agents at Cali Bail Bonds can help you obtain your freedom after an arrest, call us at 877-373-3631. Whichever jail you or your friend is in at Whittier, California, we will be happy to take you through the bail bond process to secure his/her freedom without delay.