When you are arrested for a crime in the State of Arizona, the first step is an initial appearance. This is the defendant’s first appearance in court, and that is where the defendant will be advised of the charges against him. The judge will appoint an attorney if the defendant cannot afford one, and the release condition will also be set. That’s the bail amount required for somebody to be released from jail so that they can deal with the case from the outside. When setting bail, the court looks at a number of factors mostly related to the level of the offense and the risk that the perpetrator of the crime will be to the community.

The court will look at whether there’s a history of the defendant failing to appear prior to this. So the judge has a number of different factors to look at when making the initial determination. And in terms of whether it could be cash or non-cash, that question is resolved by whether or not the bail can be satisfied by either a cash-only bond or a secured appearance bond. A cash-only bond is where the entire amount needs to be tendered in cash. A secured appearance bond is where some of the bond can be satisfied in terms of assets that can be put up, as well as usually 10% in cash.

The bail process really depends on the nature of the bond or bail that’s set by the court. Assuming that the person who was being bonded out returns to court, that bond will be exonerated after sentencing. So the person that put it up for the defendant or for himself will receive that bond back from the court after the criminal case is terminated. If you use a bail bond company, generally, what will occur is you’ll have to pay a 10% fee and put up some kind of collateral, and the bail bond company will then post the bond for you and satisfy the bail amount, but you won’t get that 10% back at the conclusion of the sentencing.

It’s good to consult an attorney about what the best course of action is because, as I said, in some circumstances you can lose 10% of the bond; but if you post it yourself in the entire amount, which sometimes is feasible and sometimes is not, then you’ll get the entire amount back for yourself at the end of the criminal case.

What Happens When Someone Gets Out Of Jail On Bail?

It varies in terms of when the court sets a first appearance. In Arizona some low-level felonies, such as drug possession, assault without significant injury or DUIs that aren’t aggravated, are all cases that will usually have a status conference and possibly a preliminary hearing a few weeks after the initial appearance. So there is not a large timeframe between when that case is initially charged and when it moves forward.

With more serious crimes you could have an initial appearance and then an indictment right there, which means the grand jury finds probable cause against you, and you could be looking at your next appearance within six weeks to two months after that. The time of the case really revolves around the severity of the crime charged and the amount of fact-gathering that the prosecution has to do. That can extend the dates or timeline out beyond what it usually is. And then you know, generally, which courts you’re in as well. So the timeframe may vary if you’re in county superior court, but they may be different if you’re in Scottsdale Municipal Court.

Do Most Criminal Cases Settle As Opposed To Going To Trial?

The vast majority of cases are resolved through plea agreements, and part of that is because of the high penalties that attach if somebody does proceed to trial. Usually, the level of prison time that you’re facing, if you proceed to trial, is substantially higher than what you’d face under a plea agreement. The majority of cases are resolved through plea agreement.

For more information on Bail Process In Arizona, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (602) 794-4480 today.