Bail in New York

Bail is an amount of money that you must deposit to the court to get someone (a defendant) released after their arrest. Bail is set by the criminal court judge at the first court appearance following arrest. Bail can be set in any monetary amount but is often in the thousands of dollars. For example, a $10,000 cash bail can be set. If the defendant makes all of his/her court appearances, the cash bail can be returned to whomever paid it.

A criminal court judge may also allow a bond to be used instead of cash to make it more affordable for family members to bail someone out. The bond is someone that can be supplied by a bail bonds service. However, some or all of the the fee paid to a bail bonds service may end up being kept by the bail bonds as a fee for their service.

A judge may allow for other forms of bail such as property, or personal recognizance bonds. When multiple forms of bail are set, the collection of different types of bail is sometimes called a bail package.

In 2019, bail reform was passed and significantly reduced a judge's ability to set bail by prohibiting bail for certain offenses. After public outrage, in 2020 and 2022, a judge's ability to set bail and the list of bail eligible offenses was expanded. A judge can now weigh whether a defendant is causing “serious harm” and whether a defendant has a history of using or possessing a gun.

Bail can be set for many types of Felony and Misdemeanor charges:

  • Sex offenses
  • Obstruction of breathing (strangulation)
  • Endangering the welfare of a child
  • Contempt (disobeying an order of protection)
  • Vehicular assault
  • Felony Assault
  • Certain other misdemeanors or felonies

If you or a loved one has been charged with a violent misdemeanor, domestic violence case, contempt (disobeying an order of protection), please contact us for a consultation.

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