Learn More About DUI Bail Bonds
Facing a DUI charge is serious business. Driving under the influence, also known as driving while intoxicated (DWI), can cause catastrophic outcomes like injury or death, even when you think you’re “okay to drive.” And when you are charged with a DUI, there are several factors that go into the total bail amount set by the judge and what kind of penalties you could face.
For example, if someone faces their first DUI charge, they may get a lower total bail amount of $2500 if they don’t present a flight risk and were barely over the legal limit. And if no accidents were caused, no one was hurt, and no property was damaged, and they don’t have prior convictions, their first DUI charge might be a relatively light punishment.
If someone has had multiple DUI offenses in the past, they may not even be able to get a bail bond for their DUI charge because the judge denied them bail. The court could decide to keep someone in jail until their upcoming court dates if they feel it is necessary for the safety of the individual or the general public, or they might make that decision based on the severity of any damage or injury caused by the DUI incident.
If the individual refuses to take a breathalyzer test or is in any way contentious to law enforcement or the courts, they could also face steeper penalties, including higher total bail amounts or having bail denied entirely. Some DUI offenders with prior convictions or who may have caused injury or death will be given bail but the total bail amount will be much higher than if it was someone’s first offense.
What Affects Bail Amounts?
When it comes to a DUI, several factors determine your total bail amount. As you might expect, the severity of the damages and injuries caused by the DUI are closely related to the total bail amount. After that, the courts will look at the breathalyzer test results, prior convictions or previous DUI offenses, alcohol or drug rehab stays, addiction issues, whether they were operating a vehicle without a drivers license, and other related factors. The judge decides whether someone is given the opportunity to post bail for a DUI charge based on all these factors.
What if I Can’t Pay?
Most people don’t have sufficient money available to pay bail. Even seemingly “smaller” amounts like $500 could be insurmountable to some. In that case, they might need to stay in jail until their trial. That’s where finding a bail bondsman that specializes in DUI bail bonds come into play. In exchange for the individual’s promise to appear (and a small, nonrefundable fee, usually 10% of the total bail amount), a bail bondsman will post a bond to the court.
When a bond is posted for your DUI it is the bail bond agent’s promise that the individual will show up for your court dates. If the defendant fails to appear for all the required court dates, the bail will be revoked, and a bench warrant will be issued. If they do appear in court for all the necessary court dates, the bond will be considered satisfied, and their relationship with the bail bonds company will end.
What Is a PR Bond?
A PR bond is when the court decides that someone can be released on their “own personal recognizance.” This means that an individual isn’t considered a serious risk, they committed a minor offense, and they are aware of what they have done. They recognize that they committed a crime and are willing to show up in court for all their hearings. For first-time offenders and those who aren’t serious criminals, the PR bond is often sought by lawyers – even when it isn’t offered by the court at first.
It’s best to avoid a DUI charge by never driving under the influence. Of course, if you or a family member do find yourself involved in a drunk driving case, working with a bail bond agent that specializes in DUI bail bonds can be the ideal solution to avoid sitting in jail until trial.