Getting Bail In Utah
In Utah, the Uniform Bail Schedule Committee was formed to help judges responsible for determining a person’s bail. It encourages them to consider mitigating as well as aggravating circumstances when determining bail. Any serious injuries involving people or property, history of criminal conduct, hate crime as well as sex offense are aggravating circumstances. The mitigating circumstances that could be taken into consideration are the age of the offender, if they helped authorities with other crimes, if the crime involves strong provocation and more. All this is taken into consideration when determining the amount of bail for someone charged with a crime. The UBSC has also established a Uniform Bail Schedule to help judges with default amounts of bail assigned to the differing crimes.
Bail is an amount of money determined by a court to be paid by a defendant. Once it is paid, the defendant will be free and required to return to the court for their hearing. In Utah, most defendants are offered bail. There are crimes where a defendant will not qualify for bail. These are serious felonies. In this case, a hearing will still be conducted so all possibilities can be considered. Once a defendant has been offered bail, they can begin the bail process from jail. It can be done by the defendant or someone representing them.
Cost Of Bail
Utah law permits bail bond companies to charge a fee of no more than 20 percent and no less than 10 percent of the bail amount. In most cases, the higher fees are charged for the smaller bail amounts. There are some bail bond companies who offer payment plans to defendants. The initial costs the defendant must pay will be lower, but they will be making payments for an extended period of time.
Posting Bail Money
There are two ways to post bail money. One way is to pay the bail amount directly to the court. In this situation, the amount of bail set for a defendant must be paid in full. The other way is for a surety bond to be used. In this situation, a defendant or someone representing them contacts a bail bond company. The defendant’s bond is then paid by the company to the court for a predetermined fee. This is common for people who are not able to pay the entire amount of their bail. When the company pays the bail, they will be held responsible for making sure the defendant shows up for their court appearance.
Missing Court Appearance
When someone posts bail and does not show up for their court appearance, it is known as bail jumping. This is considered a separate crime from the initial charge. When this happens, a Utah court will issue a bench warrant for the arrest of the defendant. The punishment for bail jumping is determined by the type of crime that initially caused a defendant to be arrested. Should a defendant be charged with a felony, it could result in them being incarcerated for up to five years for bail jumping. Should the initial charge be a misdemeanor, a defendant could be incarcerated for up to six months.
When bail jumping happens, the court will initiate the process of contacting the bail bond agent and requesting the entire bail amount. A bail bond agent will then try to obtain reimbursement for the bail amount from the defendant or any co-signer who was involved. A bail bond company will often hire a Utah Bail Enforcement Agent to apprehend the defendant.
It is possible a defendant has an acceptable reason for being late or not showing up to their court date. If the court accepts the reason, a bond could be reinstated.
When a person is arrested and placed in custody, the date and time of their trial could be several weeks or even months away. It is possible they could spend this entire time in jail. Bail is a way for individuals to get out of jail by paying financial guarantees to the court promising to return for trial. It makes it possible for them to be out of jail until their court date.