What Happens When You Skip Bail?
If you are charged with a crime and are put in jail, in order to be released from jail until your court date, you will be required to pay bail. The amount of the bail varies depending on the charges, the county and the risk for your release. Generally, you will need someone to post your bail for you, which in some situations may be a friend or relative, but in many situations a bail bond agent is used. In most situations, the full amount of your bail isn’t required; instead, you will have to pay a percentage of the set bail, which is often about 10%. For instance, if you have a $5000 bond, you may be required to put up $500 for your release. In some situations, collateral may be used for the bail. Regardless of whether cash or collateral is used for the bail, the purpose of bail is to ensure you will appear in court, so there are serious consequences that result if you do not show up for court dates.
Consequences of Failing to Appear
Failing to appear in court means you are jumping or skipping bail. If you do not appear in court for any of your scheduled court appearances, there are serious consequences that can occur, including:
- A warrant may be issued for your arrest. The police in the court district in which you were supposed to appear will be notified that you have jumped bail, so if you get stopped by the police for any reason, they will arrest you.
- The court will suspend your driver’s license, and they will not be valid until you appear before the court for the case you were originally jailed for.
- If you jump bail, you will not be eligible to be bailed out of jail in the future.
- Along with the charges you were originally jailed for, you will also be charged with additional offenses. These charges may include contempt of court or failure to appear and if found guilty of these charges, you may receive additional jail time and fines.
- Regardless of whether you have already posted bail, skipping bail may result in the amount of bail bond being increased.
If collateral was used for your bail and you skip bail, the collateral can be confiscated. This means that if a friend or family member put their house, vehicle or other valuable item up as collateral for your bail, the property will be surrendered to the court if you skip bail. Skipping bail never has positive results, so to avoid the negative consequences, it is in your best interest to appear in court for all scheduled court dates.
At Free at Last Bail Bonds, we understand the importance and urgency of reuniting families. If you or a loved one needs our services, we are here for you 24 hours a day at 404-577-2245.