Helpful Bail Bonds Process Information for Residents in the Wesley Chapel, FL Area
A Wesley Chapel Bail Bonds LLC is dedicated to providing you with support and guidance throughout the bail bonds process.
Introduction to Bail Bonds
We offer our clients a guide that is comprised of bail bond-related procedures, regulations, and laws. In order to gain a better understanding of the bail bonds process, we encourage you to review the following information.
Before we send out a bail agent to a jail or detention facility to post bonds on behalf of our clients, we first collect all necessary premiums and complete indemnity contracts. Release times vary and are dependent on each facility. However, it can usually take anywhere from two to eight hours to be released from jail. After being released, defendants must report to the surety and complete the required paperwork.
Regulation and Regulatory Authority
Chapter 648 of the Florida Statutes, with augmentation from Chapter 69B-221 of the Administrative Rules of the Chief Financial Officer, gives authority for the direct regulation of bondsmen. The rules are made with statutory authority, which can be reviewed by the courts as if they were statutes and must be followed in the same manner. To put it simply, the rule is law.
Bondsmen must obey the provisions of Chapter 903 of the Florida Statutes as it is concerned with the criminal justice aspect of bail. The chapters are enforced by the Department of Financial Services and by the courts, either directly or indirectly.
“Unless charged with a capital offense or an offense punishable by life imprisonment and the proof of guilt is evident the presumption is great, every person charged with a crime…shall be entitled topre-trialrelease on reasonable conditions. If no conditions of release can reasonably protect the community from risk of physical harm to persons, assure the presence of the accused at trial, or assure the integrity of the judicial process, the accused may be detained.” (Section 14, Florida Declaration of Rights)
When it comes to criminal cases, the decision to release or detain a defendant is left up to the judges, also known as the committing magistrates. In order to prevent accusations of constitutional violations, committing magistrates only order pre-trial detentions in the most extreme cases.
Typically,bondis denied to those who have previously jumped bail, have had prior convictions for violentcrimes,or were arrested with large amounts of drugs. The conditions of pre-trial release are usually based on the prior history of each individual. In order to assist with the decision, the judge utilizes provisions such as the defendant’s previous convictions, ties to the community, and a variety of other sources.
Florida Statutes 903.03 and 903.046 direct committing magistrates to consider various factors, such as the danger posed by the defendants to the community and the possible source of funds that will be used for the bail. A committing magistrate who decides to impose monetary bail must also set the amount while keeping in mind that he or she is still bound by the constitutional requirements of reasonableness. Moreover, the Supreme Court of Florida ruled that charging excessive bail is equivalent to denying bail.
As per court rulings, the amount of a bond is appropriate if it is low enough for a defendant to post it without undue hardship. However, the bond must be high enough that the defendant would rather face his or her accusers in court than forfeit it.
When Decisions Are Made
The conditions and the amount of pre-trial release are sometimes determined before the arrest is even made. This is especially true when it comes to warrants because an issued warrant may contain provisions for bail. In terms of arrests without warrants, almost all counties have a bond schedule approved by a committing magistrate to cover misdemeanors. In some jurisdictions, the lesser degrees of felonies are included.
According to the Rules of the Florida Supreme Court, a defendant who was not previously released must be taken before a committing magistrate within 24 hours of the arrest. This is a formal court proceeding calledfirstappearance.Firstappearance is referred to as advisories in Pasco County and PP Court or preliminary presumption in Hillsborough County.
This particular process is when the committing magistrate advises the defendant:
- Of the charges against him/her - Of his/her right to remain silent or have his/her statements used against him/her - Of his/her right to an attorney and that one will be provided if he/she cannot afford private counsel - Of his/her right to communicate with family and friends
It is during this time that the magistrate decides whether or not to detain the defendant.Firstappearance is held seven days a week in every county in the state of Florida and is public, similar to other formal court proceedings.