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Understanding bail

On Behalf of | Jun 9, 2023 | CRIMINAL LAW - Criminal Defense

If you are facing criminal charges, there are a lot of things to think about. One concern is probably jail and if there is a chance to get out on bail.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the constitution of Oklahoma provides bail rights except in certain circumstances, such as violent offenses or those in which life imprisonment is the maximum sentence.

Types of bail

According to the Oklahoma Insurance Department Bail Bond Division, if a judge grants bail, there are various ways the defendant can pay it. These include:

  • Cash bond: The defendant pays cash for the bail amount. The court returns the cash if the defendant meets the conditions of release.
  • Property bond: Some defendants can use real estate as collateral to post the bail amount.
  • Surety bond: This money comes, usually, from a bail bondsman. The defendant pays a fee to the company, who then pays the bail amount to the court. There is no refund of the bond fee, which is often 10 to 20% of the bail amount.
  • Personal recognizance bond: For some non-violent misdemeanor charges, the judge may release the defendant with just a written agreement. This often only occurs when the defendant also has strong connections with a local career, family and the community.

Conditions of bail

When making bail, the defendant promises to stay away from all criminal activities, appear to all court hearings and make sure the court knows of any address change. If the defendant does not meet the court-ordered conditions, he or she usually has to return to jail.