Posts made in March 2019

A Brief History of Bail Bond Laws

Bail Bonds in West Chester, PA |

After nearly 200 years, the most valuable bail bond law to date was instituted by the U.S. Congress in the form of the Bail Reform Act of 1966, which stated that a defendant facing trial for a non-capital offense should be released “on his personal recognizance” or a personal bond. However, if the court had reason to believe the defendant would leave town, the judge could choose a more restrictive alternative like limiting the defendant’s travel and executing an appearance bond to be refunded when the defendant appeared in court.

While individual states had their own rules, most of them added guidelines similar to the Bail Reform Act of 1966. At that time flaws in the act were also pointed out, for example, the defendant’s potential risk to the community for non-capital offenses. This became an issue when defendants released for non-capital offenses committed more crimes while they were out on bail. So a revision was made by The District of Columbia Court Reform and Criminal Procedure Act of 1970, which enabled judges to consider the dangerousness to the community as well as the flight risk when setting bail for non-capital cases.

At a later time, the federal justice system added the “safety of the community” as a factor to be considered when imposing bail, and thus the Bail Reform Act of 1984 was passed. This newer version added guidelines stating that a person can be detained without bail if he or she:

  • Poses a risk to the community.
  • Intimidates jurors or witnesses, and obstructs justice while out on bail.
  • Commits a violent crime, an offense carrying a death penalty or life in prison, or committing any felony while already having a serious criminal record.

Rely on the experienced staff at Always Available Bail Bonds LLC, which serves clients with bail bonds in West Chester, PA, and throughout Eastern Pennsylvania. Call 1-800-BAIL-OUT any time of night or day.


What Is an Immigration Bond?

Immigration Bond in Stroudsburg, PA |

Noncitizens in immigration detention are eligible for immigration bonds. An immigration bond is a sum of money that they will receive back if they show up for all their court and other dates with the United States immigration authorities. The initial bond amount is set by the district director of the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The minimum amount is $1,500. The amount beyond the minimum depends on a variety of factors in the person’s case. For example, ICE considers the length of time the person has lived in the United States, any family ties in the U.S., employment history, criminal record, and any history of immigration violations.

When ICE sets the initial bond amount, your relative or friend can request in writing or orally that the amount is lowered or changed by an immigration judge. As some judges conduct bond hearings at the same time as the initial master calendar hearing, it is possible to file a “Motion for Bond Redetermination” and request a separate hearing during which the judge decides on the bond issue alone. Once the judge makes a final bond determination, the amount cannot change unless the circumstances related to the noncitizen’s detention change.

Note: Not everyone is eligible for an immigration bond in Stroudsburg, PA. Some noncitizens—mostly those with criminal records—are subject to mandatory detention and thus cannot get out on bond.

Take advantage of the 24/7 services of Always Available Bail Bonds LLC, assisting clients throughout Eastern Pennsylvania. Call 1-800-BAIL-OUT any time of night or day.

Part 2: Lawful and Unlawful Arrests

Bail Bonds in Harrisburg, PA |

To continue our blog on lawful and unlawful arrests, for an arrest to be lawful the court or official body must have jurisdiction and the authority to arrest the person targeted by the warrant. The arresting officer is required to know the requirements of a valid warrant. If the warrant does not fulfill all of these specifications, the officer may be liable for a false arrest even though he or she did not prepare the warrant.

Also, there is no protection from false arrest if the arresting officer intentionally or recklessly leaves out information, or knowingly provides false information, to procure the warrant. In most cases, however, if the officer mistakenly leaves out or provides inaccurate information, the warrant is still valid.

What Is a Warrantless Arrest?

If all of the known facts at the time of the arrest lead a “reasonably prudent” person to believe that the person arrested had committed a felony, the law enforcement officer can make an arrest without a warrant. Even if a criminal trial later proves the person innocent, this does not mean the officer lacked probable cause. Law enforcement officials can also make warrantless arrests of anyone that is potentially guilty of breach of the peace. This arrest is considered lawful whether the breach of the peace is a felony or misdemeanor and regardless of whether all of the people arrested were actually breaching the peace.

Contact Always Available Bail Bonds LLC when you need bail bonds in Harrisburg, PA, any time of night or day. Our experienced staff works with all manner of arrested persons.

Part 1: Lawful and Unlawful Arrests

Affordable Bail Bonds in Williamsport, PA |

A person who is being arrested must be informed that he or she is being arrested. However, when a law enforcement officer is making the arrest, a visible badge or uniform is sufficient to inform the person that he or she is being arrested. For an arrest to be lawful, a law enforcement officer must also tell the person arrested what they are being arrested for. If telling the person what they are being arrested for is too dangerous—or will lead to an escape—can the officer making the arrest skip this requirement. When a law enforcement officer is making an arrest under a warrant, the person arrested must be informed of the warrant and shown the warrant if they ask the arresting officer.

What Is a Warrant?

A warrant is issued by a legal process from the court or another official body for the arrest of a person. An arrest warrant is typically for criminal charges; it may also be used in relation to mental health or guardianship issues. When the warrant is deemed “valid,” the person making the arrest cannot be sued in civil court for false arrest. A valid warrant must include:

  • The name of the court or other official issuing entity.
  • The arrested person’s name or description.
  • The offense or reason for the arrest.
  • Additional criminal procedure requirements to make a warrant valid depend on the jurisdiction.

Contact Always Available Bail Bonds LLC at 1-800-BAIL-OUT when you or someone in your life needs affordable bail bonds in Williamsport, PA, or anywhere in Eastern Pennsylvania.

Misconceptions About Bail Bonds

Bail Bonds in West Chester, PA |

The first and least useful misconception about bail bondsmen is that they are disreputable. The truth is that most bail bondsmen are hardworking individuals who are motivated by helping families get by during a tremendously difficult time. Also, the best bondsmen are extremely knowledgeable about laws as they pertain to many kinds of cases, as well as about local law enforcement agencies and the area’s court system. Some of the most common myths or misconceptions about bail bonds, in general, include all of the following:

You Can Only Pay Bail Bondsmen in Cash

While cash is certainly acceptable, other options are available for you to pay bail bond companies. At Always Available Bail Bonds LLC, payments for bail bonds in West Chester, PA, and nearby can be made by credit card quickly over the phone.

Bail Amounts Are Negotiable

Bail amounts set by the court are not negotiable. A bail bondsman can help get you to get out of jail, but the bail amounts depend on what the charges are, whether the accused has a previous criminal record, and the probability that the defendant will show up in court. The judge is the only person who can adjust the amount of bail.

Individuals Can Only be Bailed Out by Family Members

Anyone older than 18 or can bail someone else out of jail. However, if you have posted a bond for someone else and the person fails to appear for court, you will lose your bond, and it will be forfeited.