Bond Reduction Hearings
A Bond, also referred to as bail, is a monetary amount that must be posted for a person to be released from jail while their case is awaiting trial. It is important to remember that bond is not intended to punish. Rather, it is intended to ensure that the person will appear for his or her court appearances. If a Defendant fails to appear in court their bond may be revoked and a warrant issued for their arrest.How is Bond Determined?
In Brevard county, and many other jurisdictions, bond is set based on a local bond schedule that determines the bond amount based on the offense and where the defendant lives. However, a Judge can set bond at amounts higher or lower than the bond schedule. Additionally, Judges may imposed certain non-monetary conditions as a part of the bond, such as, no contact with victims, no consumption of alcohol, GPS monitoring, and other relevant restrictions based on the alleged offense.How can a Bond be Reduced?
The Defendant has a right to request a reasonable bond amount at the time of his or her first appearance (within 24 hours of arrest). It is very important to have an experienced attorney, who can argue for a low bond or a release without a monetary bond at the Defendant's First Appearance. I frequently appear at the First Appearance hearing and work to get the lowest possible bond amount, enabling my client to be able to post bond and be released from jail without having to wait for an additional hearing. Even after the First Appearance, I can file a Motion to Set Bond (if bond was not previously set) or a Motion for Bond Reduction if the original bond amount is unreasonable or my Defendant cannot afford the original bond amount.
There are numerous arguments that can be made to a judge in an attempt to get a person's bond reduced substantially. At the Bond Hearing the Judge will consider a person's prior criminal history, ties to the community which includes, length of residence, employment history and whether a person has any local family members, the nature of the offense, prior failures to appear, financial resources to post bond, and whether a danger to the community or any victim exists. It is important to have an experienced bond hearing attorney to present all of the relevant information to the Judge in a clear, concise, and persuasive manner.
Additionally, due to overcrowding at the Brevard County Jail, more and more judges are granting requests for release without bail.What Happens once Bond is set?
Once the bond amount has been set by the Court you can either post a cash bond or a surety bond using a bail bonding company. If you post a cash bond, you are required to pay the full bond amount to the jail. If a cash bond is posted the full amount, minus any court costs and fees, will be returned to the person who posted the bond at the conclusion of the case. If a surety bond is posted using a bail bond company, the bond is posted by the bail bond company in exchange for a fee, usually 10% of the bond amount. In most cases the Bondsman will also require collateral valued at the bond's total amount.
If you, a friend, or family member have been arrested and cannot afford the bond, regardless of whether the initial crime allegedly occurred in Melbourne, Palm Bay, Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Merritt Island, Titusville, Rockledge, Cape Canaveral, Satellite Beach, Indian Harbour Beach, West Melbourne, Melbourne Village, Melbourne Beach, Indialantic, Palm Shores, Grant-Valkaria, Mims, or anywhere else in Brevard County, contact me to immediately schedule your free consultation.