If you or a loved one are just about to be released on bond, you may have had a set of rules handed down by the judge that has to be followed in exchange for the release to be granted. These are called bond conditions and they serve a few functions from making sure the defendant doesn’t flee to keeping everyone safe. Here is an overview of how bond conditions work.
Bond conditions have a purpose
Bond conditions are kind of like a contract with the judge. They help to make sure the defendant is held accountable while awaiting their hearing. When someone who has been arrested is released temporarily, the courts are taking a risk that the person may either try to flee from possible jail time or that they could hurt someone or commit another crime while being released. To help lower the risk, bond conditions are given to help ensure that the defendant stays on the right track or risk the consequences.
How a judge decides what conditions are appropriate
When a judge decides to offer bond at a bond hearing, they take a look at several things to make sure that first and foremost the defendant does not pose a threat to the safety of anyone including possible victims. If they feel confident that the defendant is not violent, they may look at past criminal history as well as the severity of the current charges to gauge what would be appropriate rules that the defendant must follow while out on bail.
Universal bond conditions
While some judges may require very specific conditions for a defendant, such as drug counseling for addiction or strict travel bans to avoid the defendant not showing up to their hearing, there are a few bond conditions that are basically universal. These are no alcohol, no drugs, and no firearms while awaiting a hearing. The reason for these rules are pretty obvious but it is just the way that judge can help the defendant stay on track from any possible trouble while out on bond.
The consequences of violating bond conditions
While some may think that bond conditions are more of a suggestion than a requirement, make no mistake that bond conditions are legal mandates, and violating them can put someone right back in jail and possible additional charges could be brought forth depending on if the violation breaks further laws.
To conclude, some form of bond conditions are typically associated with a bond released but the purpose is not to make a defendant’s life more difficult but to just make sure that they stay in the right lane and that everyone is safe. Most are very straightforward and easy to follow and will only help to make the judge at the hearing see that the defendant is being responsible and taking things seriously.