The process of bail in Alabama

If Alabama residents find themselves caught up in the criminal justice system, they’re probably wondering what’s going to happen next. People get arrested for any number of reasons, including driving while intoxicated, committing theft, or worse. One key issue that many criminal defendants will be worrying about is bail. They need to know exactly what it is and how it will affect them.

What can people expect with regard to bail?

The process of bail revolves around the idea that the defendant will provide the court with cash or assets to be held until the proceedings or trials relating to the defendant’s arrest end. The defendant will provide these assets in return for freedom until the entire court process and case is over. Sometimes trials don’t start for weeks or even months on end, a situation that puts people who may be innocent in a really difficult situation. By providing the court with bail, these individulas are able to stay out of jail and work on their criminal defense strategies.

What happens with the bail process?

When police arrest a suspect, they take this person to the police station where he or she is booked and processed. Once that’s done, the police force may release the suspect if the crime he or she is charged with is a minor offense. If it is a more serious charge, the suspect will most likely have to wait for a bail hearing. Bail hearings usually take place within 48 hours of an arrest. At the bail hearing, the judge will determine whether the suspect should get bail or remain in jail.

In Alabama, the courts use a bond/bail schedule to determine how much a defendant’s bail should be. For offenses like a capital felony, bail could be anywhere from $50,000 to not receiving bail at all. Misdemeanor bail amounts usually range from $300-$6000 for a Class A misdemeanor to lower amounts for Class B and Class C misdemeanors.

Being a criminal defendant is nerve-racking. People who are dealing with the situation may benefit by working with attorneys who have experience dealing with these types of issues.