Bail is required to be set within twelve hours of the issuance of a complaint. All defendants have a right to bail under our New Jersey constitution. If bail is posted, defendants are released until the charges set forth in the complaint are resolved. Defendants can be required to post funds or property to assure that they will appear in court in the future. Put differently, bail is a promise to appear.
They may be required to deposit funds or property in exchange for a promise to appear. If defendants have significant ties to the community, or no criminal history, they may be considered for a Release on Own Recognizance, or R.O.R. This is an affidavit certifying that they are aware of the case against them and will appear in court to face the charges. Defendants may also be required to give a personal bond, which is a promise to appear or face a judgment, whereby a specified amount of money is forfeited.
Alternatively, some defendants choose to pay a bail bondsman to post funds on their behalf. These defendants may be ordered to post a higher bail, or have no bail set. As a result, these individuals will remain in jail until the case is over. If they are released and appear in court as required, bail money may be refunded in full upon case resolution or disposition. Once defendants are released, bail is discharged to the surety.
Bail investigations may be ordered by a Superior Court Judge of the Criminal Division. Criminal Division bail investigators or case supervisors gather information on the defendant’s ties or standing in the community. Identifying information is collected, including the names, addresses dates of birth, employment, criminal record, mental health and drug abuse history.
These investigations are conducted by professionals working for the court. They investigate and report on a defendant’s amenability to bail or bail supervision. Bail investigation reports consider the seriousness of the offense and the severity of punishment upon conviction, as well as the defendant’s family ties and financial status.
All of these factors are considered in light of the probability that the defendant will appear for trial or other court events. Case supervisors or bail investigators report to the Judge, who hears evidence from the defense and prosecution and decides the amount and form of bail to be set, if any.
At our law firm we handle only Criminal and DWI matters. We have experience dealing with bail issues, including bail reduction motions. If you have questions concerning bail or any other matter please contact our office for a free consultation.