How Long Can You Be Out on Bail?

Bail is the state’s process by which they attempt to guarantee that a person charged with a crime will appear for trial. This is achieved by asking for collateral, usually in the form of cash. When the defendant appears for and completes their pre-trial and trial procedures, bail is returned at the end of the period. The amount of bail will be different based on the crime, severity and whether the defendant had any prior convictions or restrictions.

Many of the clients of our bail bonds agency in Angleton have come to us and inquired how long they can actually be out on bail. The short answer is that, provided the defendant complies with all the conditions of bail, they can be out until the end of their trial or an agreement is reached. The longer answer depends on a few factors.

A general timeframe

It’s difficult to give a precise timeframe for how long it may take you to go to trial, because it depends on a number of factors. First, the criminal justice system has a specific set of proceedings, which can involve a number of pre-trial discovery hearings. While you are guaranteed the right to a speedy trial, often a criminal defense attorney will advise you to waive that right, to build a better defense.

Second, your case will be docketed, meaning it will be scheduled on the court calendar. If the court is overloaded with hearing cases, that will mean your hearings and trial will be delayed as well.

Finally, the facts of your case will matter. If you’re indicted on a felony charge, your case is much more likely to be complex and require a great deal of pre-trial evidence. Misdemeanors are typically quicker to litigate or reach a plea agreement.

For an average misdemeanor, the case could go to trial in a few months, but in busier areas or larger counties, you might be out on bail for up to two years. Felonies typically involve a longer time span.

Luckily, if you can’t make bail right away, there are limitations to how long you can sit in jail before either trial commences or bail is reduced. Article 17.151 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure provides that a felony defendant must be released on personal bond or by bail reduction, if the state isn’t ready to go to trial within three months. For misdemeanors, that timeframe ranges from five to 30 days, depending on the misdemeanor class. While that doesn’t guarantee you’ll get out on bail, it does give a sense of the state’s timeline.

Get more info about bail bonds in Angleton

Brazoria County Bail Bonds has over 25 years of experience as a bail bonds agent in Angleton. We can help you make bail quickly and easily, and answer any questions you have about the bail bonds process. We accept multiple forms of collateral and will work with you to determine how to best handle your individual case. Call us today to learn more about how we can help you or your loved one.

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