How to argue for your own bail if you can’t hire or don’t have time to hire a criminal defense lawyer in Pennsylvania or New Jersey
Our law firm represents individuals charged with crimes in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. In many of these cases it is very important that we advocate that our client be released on bail pending trial. If a Court orders that a person is detained or that bail is set unreasonably high, it makes the case that much more difficult to defend because logistically it is harder for us as criminal defense lawyers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey to visit the client and discuss various aspects of the case with them. More importantly, however, being held in a local county jail pending trial obviously restricts a person’s freedom, which costs them not only their liberty, but their ability to provide for their families for many months.
When to hire a criminal defense lawyer—as soon as possible
Our law firm always advises clients and their families to hire counsel as soon as possible following an arrest. Pennsylvania and New Jersey have very different laws with regards to bail. New Jersey has a cashless bail system under its bail reform system. In the Garden State, a Court will decide whether or not to detain a person pending trial following a Prosecutor’s Detention Motion which is filed following an arrest on most indictable crimes. In Pennsylvania, however, there is still a cash system and bail is set at a monetary amount following argument.
The factors that determine bail in Pennsylvania and New Jersey
Pennsylvania and New Jersey both evaluate bail on risk of flight and danger to the community. If you’re in a situation where you’re arrested but do not have time to hire a lawyer, it is important that you make these points to the Judge in the event that a Public Defender also isn’t available. Bail argument should focus on the following
- your contacts to the community which would include your marital status, employment, children, and years lived in the area.
- Your lack criminal history (if applicable) or that a prior conviction is years removed from this current incident and unrelated
Bail arguments and trial arguments are different!
Obviously, it is better for your criminal defense lawyer to make these arguments, but keep in mind that bail is set based on, not the facts of your case, but it is set to ensure that you will appear for trial. In the event that the Court is not inclined to set a reasonable bail an alternative is house arrest (electronic monitoring). While house arrest is not ideal, it is better then sitting in county jail awaiting trial.
What to do if the judge sets your bail high or orders that you remain detained?
Please remember that my first rule is hire a lawyer! Arguing your own bail is NOT a good decision if you have time to get a lawyer! Bail is a very important issue in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and if bail is set unreasonably high or you are ordered detained in New Jersey, your family can hire a defense lawyer to make an appeal to a higher Court. Our criminal defense law firm frequently makes bail, appeal arguments, because very often the proper arguments are not made during the initial bail hearing.
Contact Our Criminal Defense Lawyers in PA & NJ
Please click here to contact our Philadelphia criminal defense lawyers. We offer free case reviews and serve the following areas in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Atlantic City, Camden, Cherry Hill, Chester, Conshohocken, Doylestown, Media, Norristown, Philadelphia, Pottstown, Salem, Upper Darby, Upper Merion, Upper Providence, Vineland & Woodbury areas.