Georgia bail bonds involve making a payment that allows you to get out of jail before your trial takes place. Understandably, many people have questions on this process, like “How much will I have to pay?” or “What if I can't pay the bail bond amount?” In this article, we'll take a look at some of these questions to help you grasp how they work.
Three Categories of Crimes for Georgia Bail Bonds
How Georgia bail bonds work for your case depends on which category of crime yours falls into. There are three types, including:
If you're charged with a misdemeanor, then you're going to get a bond very quickly. Some examples of misdemeanors include:
- Resisting arrest
- Assault and battery
For misdemeanors in Georgia, judges have to set you one by law. Sometimes we get calls from people who are still in jail for a misdemeanor. In this case we'll call the magistrate and tell them that they have to be released.
An important note about misdemeanors is that it doesn't matter how many you're charged with, the bail bond requirement still applies. It's important to call a lawyer like Brett Willis if you haven't been released for your misdemeanor charge.
The second category is felony charges, specifically ones that aren't outlined in § 17-6-1. Jails have a set list of bail bond amounts for each felony. If you pay this amount, they will let you out.
Felony Under § 17-6-1
The final category is felonies listed under § 17-6-1. You can think of this as the “bad list” of felonies. These are only bondable by a superior court judge. Some examples of these types of crimes include:
- Armed robbery
- Aggravated sodomy
Sale and possession with intent is also on this list, which means having drugs with the intent of selling or distributing them to others. This is something people don't generally expect to be on the list, so it can surprise many people who are arrested for this crime. If you're charged with one of these offenses, then you'll have to stay in jail until a lawyer files a bond motion for you.
What Are Bond Motions for Georgia Bail Bonds?
When a lawyer files a bond motion, it means that they are requesting a hearing with a superior court judge pertaining to your bond. In some cases this is because you committed an offense outlined in § 17-6-1 and you're requesting a bail bond. In other cases, a bond motion might be filed to attempt to reduce the bond. This may be the case if the defense thinks that the bond amount is too high for the crime committed.
What If You Can't Afford a Bail Bond?
Georgia bail bonds are a way to get out of jail before your trial, so what if you can't afford one? There are two main options in this case. One of them is to find a professional bondsman. A bondsman's services allow you to pay a smaller amount of the bail upfront, typically about 10%. If this amount is still not affordable, you may be able to work out a payment plan with the bondsman so you can pay it off in installments.
Another option is to find a defense lawyer who can file a bond motion for you. They can request a hearing to lower your bond amount because you can't afford it. In some cases, a judge will lower the amount to one you can afford.
Having Issues with Bail Bonds? Call a Lawyer Today
Whether you're waiting for release after a misdemeanor or you're not sure how you're going to pay for bail, you need a lawyer. A criminal defense lawyer is your advocate both in the court and outside it. They'll help you to know your rights and ensure you're treated fairly. Brett Willis has over 15 years of experience in law. Whatever problems you're facing with the legal system, you can rest assured that you'll be taken care of. If you have any more questions on Georgia bail bonds or you need help, don't hesitate to