Bond Hearings in South Carolina
Within 24 hours of a person being arrested, a bond hearing will be held. At this hearing, a judge will determine, what type of bond will be required in order to release, or bail, a person out of police custody. It is important to note that a bond hearing is not your trial and you are considered innocent until the outcome of your actual trial. A bond just enables you to be released from jail.
The judge presiding over your bond hearing considers two major factors in determining what type of bond to set in your case:
- Are you a flight risk? Meaning, will you show up for trial if released on bond?
- Do you pose a danger to anyone if released on bond?
If possible, it is important to retain an attorney prior to your bond hearing. An attorney can ensure you understand the bond process and advocate on your behalf at the hearing. Testimony from the officer and/or the victims will be allowed and having an attorney to represent your rights will ensure you receive a fair bond.
Types of bonds
Personal Recognizance Bond (“PR Bond”):
- No money is needed to bond out of jail if a PR Bond is set. However, with this particular bond you are ensuring the judge upon your release that you will show up for any future court dates and you are also acknowledging a debt to the court equal to the total amount of the bond. If the conditions of the bond are broken, your bond could be revoked and you could be returned to jail owing the full debt to the court.
Cash Surety Bond:
- If a cash surety bond is set, you must find a “surety” to guarantee the court that you will show up for your court date. Bail bondsmen are typically used in securing cash surety bonds, charge fees for their services and require initial payments of 10-15% of the total bond amount. Family members or other individuals may also act as sureties by depositing the entire amount of the bond with the court or by pledging property to the court as collateral.
Bond Reduction/Bail Reduction
After bond has been set, there could be circumstances which render a modification or change to the bond. New information may become available or a change in circumstances could occur that would give rise to your bond being modified. Modifications can go both ways-judges can increase or decrease the original bond amount. Therefore, a skilled attorney will be needed to ensure your rights are represented with accuracy during the bond modification hearing.
The South Carolina criminal defense attorneys at the Strom Law Firm will fight for your Bond Reduction/Bail Reduction bail reduction and fight to defend your rights. Call today for a free consultation at 803.252.4800.