A Comprehensive Guide to the Bail Process

Bail Process

Bail Process

Almost every country’s constitution guarantees the right to a fair trial. It is a fundamental human right to ensure you are not wrongly punished for a crime you didn’t commit. It can be understandably distressing if you are ever arrested for a crime you didn’t commit. Typically, such a scenario would mean spending time in a lock-up until your trial is done. Sometimes, it can take months and even years for a criminal trial to complete. If you are found innocent, you still lose valuable time in lock-up.

Fortunately, the legal system acknowledges this flaw and mitigates it through the bail system, allowing you to be free until your trial is done. Here’s everything you must know about posting bail.

What Is Bail?

Bail is a legality that allows people accused of a crime to be released from custody while awaiting trial. The court still wants you to cooperate during the trial and not miss the hearings. Courts will hold a sum of money to guarantee that you will cooperate and not flee. You would get this money back after the trial, regardless of whether you are found guilty or innocent. However, if you flee and the trial does not proceed, the court will hold on to the bail money.

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms in Canada recognizes bail as a constitutional right. It lays out that no person shall be denied bail without just cause. However, the bail money is up to the court’s discretion and varies depending upon the nature of the crime you are accused of.

The Bail Process

Once a person gets arrested, an officer reads them their rights, such as the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. They then take them to the police station, where their personal information, mugshot, and fingerprints are taken.

By law, the arrested person must be presented in court soon after arrest if the police want to keep them detained. Before this, the person should arrange an attorney. If they cannot afford one, one will be provided to them by the state. Hiring a professional attorney from a reputable law firm like Liberty Law is essential to ensure a successful trial and favorable bail terms.

Once the arrested individual is presented in court, the judge hears evidence regarding the nature of the crime and decides if bail should be granted. If the offense is bailable, they set the bail amount depending upon several factors. These include flight risk, the nature of the crime, and community ties. For example, the bail amount for misdemeanors is lower than that for a felony charge. Likewise, the bail amount increases if the suspect is likely to flee.

Paying For Bail

Not everyone can afford to post bail, so the system has been criticized for favoring the rich. However, there are ways to finance your bail money. Consider liquidating your assets to have enough money to post bail. You can also ask friends and family to help collect the bail amount or take out a personal loan.

There are also bail bond services that post bail on your behalf in exchange for a small but non-refundable fee, a percentage of the original bail amount. However, if you flee, the bail bond agent is legally empowered to hire a bounty hunter to locate and return you to custody.


Getting arrested for a crime that you didn’t commit can be highly disturbing for you and your family. As you worry about the trial and go through the emotional turmoil, you should be with your loved ones, not in a lock-up. Posting bail allows you to be free until the trial is concluded. Hiring an attorney can help you make the bail process smoother and more streamlined. They can also negotiate a lower bail amount, which you can arrange more easily.