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How Judges Determine Bail: The Method to the Bail Setting Process

If someone you know has been arrested in Detroit, it may help to understand how judges determine bail amounts.

Posted 5 years ago by Jim Titus

Judges don’t just select random numbers when calculating an individual’s bail. There is a standardized process for calculating and setting bail amounts. For whatever reason, if you or someone you know will be standing before a judge sometime soon, it might help to familiarize yourself with how judges determine bail.

What is Bail?

First, it helps to understand what bail is and how the process works. Usually after an arrest, an individual will go before a judge to determine the bail amount. The court uses bail to make sure a person accused of a crime doesn’t flee, but rather appears in the courtroom on a later date.

The individual will have the opportunity to post bail or have a friend or family member post for them. This is where bail bonds are helpful. Once the defendant is released, he or she will wait for their court date.

If the alleged crime is severe enough or if the defendant has a criminal history, the judge may deny bail all together. Bail may be denied if the individual has a record of fleeing as well.

If you or someone you know has been arrested, it may help to understand how judges determine bail amounts. They may consult a bail schedule for predetermined amounts.

How Judges Determine Bail Amounts

Bail amounts vary due to the nature of the crime, so judges will probably consult a bail schedule. This document provides guidelines to the judge to help determine the amount, but judges may increase or decrease the amount based on other circumstances.

Judges will look at the nature of the crime, the defendant’s record and finances, his or her community status, and more before coming up with a final number. The judge may ask for additional information about past crimes if applicable, and if the individual failed to appear in court in the past. Also, whether or not an individual is on parole will have a great bearing on his or her bail amount.

Technology in Bail

In some courts, a judge may use a computer program to determine the bail amount. This technology includes information on the defendant’s history, type of alleged crime, flight risk, and more. Although a dollar amount will be suggested by this program, the final decision is up to the judge.

Contact Detroit Bail Bonds to learn more about the bail setting process or for help getting someone out of jail.


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