While bail is used throughout the United States, each state has the right to set its own laws and regulations regarding bail amounts, conditions for release, and the entire bail bonds process. This article is specific to how the bail bond process works in Georgia.
What is Bail
Bail provides a financial guarantee that you will return for all your court appearances until your case concludes or is dismissed. In other words, bail is not a punishment. Instead, when you pay the bail amount, you promise to show up in court at the specified date. If you do not, the court will keep the bail money and issue a warrant for your arrest.
Bail allows you to return home and continue your employment while awaiting your court date.
Understanding Bail and Bond in Georgia
One thing that can make the bail bonding process in Georgia confusing is that many people use the terms bail and bond interchangeably. Bail is the amount of money you pay the court to guarantee that you will return for all court dates until your case concludes. In turn, a bond is a pledge a bail bondsman makes on your behalf to pay your bail if you do not return for your court date.
Types of Georgia Bail Bonds
The bail bond process in Georgia allows four types of bail bonds that will get you released from jail.
- Cash Bond – You can bond yourself out of jail in Georgia if you have the cash to pay the total amount of the bail set for your case. In this case, cash usually means cash. No credit cards, checks, or payment plans are accepted. The good news is that with a cash bond, the entire bail amount is returned to you when your case resolves, regardless of the outcome.
- Property Bond – The bail bonding process in Georgia allows you to use a property bond to get out of jail if you meet the following conditions: First, you must have double the value of the bail amount in equity on the property. You must then provide the sheriff’s department overseeing the property location with a quitclaim deed or warranty deed and proof that all property taxes are paid, and proof of equity. Once the bond is issued, the sheriff’s office may place a lien on the property. Should you miss your court date, the court may foreclose on the property.
- Personal Bond – A personal bond may be allowed by the judge for minor offenses. This is also known as “own recognizance.” When this is an option, you simply give your word that you will make your court dates. Then, you can bond yourself out of jail.
- Bail Bond – The vast majority of the time, people opt for a bail bond. The bail bond agent agrees to front the court the full amount of the bail on your behalf. In Georgia, you pay the bail bond agent up to 15% of the bail as a non-refundable fee.
How are Georgia Bond Amounts Determined?
In Georgia, the bond amount that will allow you to get out of jail is set by the court. The judge in your bail hearing considers several factors when setting bail. These factors help the judge determine whether you are a flight risk or a danger to the community and include:
- The Georgia bail schedule
- Your ties to the community
- Your length of residence in the area
- Your employment status and work history
- Your criminal history
- The nature of the crime
- The level of violence in the crime
- Your ability to pay
- Public safety
While the bond amount in Georgia is up to the judge, there are general guidelines the judge will follow. This is called the Georgia bail schedule.
Bond Amounts by Crime in Georgia
Remember that the Georgia bail schedule is a guide the judge uses, not the final word on the bail amount. This guide provides the average bond amounts by crime in Georgia:
- Public Intoxication – Generally between $200 and $500 and sometimes personal bond
- DUI – Georgia does not differentiate between driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The bail amount for a first offense generally runs between$500 and $2,500
- DUI on a Suspended License – The Georgia bond amount for driving while intoxicated on a suspended license starts at $2,500
- Violating a Restraining Order – Depending upon the circumstances violating a restraining order in Georgia can run from $1,000 to $15,000
- Possession of a Controlled Substance – For a first offense, bail is typically set at $2,500, but it can jump to $10,000 for the second offense and higher from there
- Simple Assault and Battery – In general, the bond amount in Georgia for simple assault and battery ranges between $2,500 and $5,000
- Sexual Battery – Can be as high as $10,000
- Hit and Run – In Georgia, the bond amount for a hit and run is set between $5,000 and $10,000
- Stalking – In general, stalking runs between $10,000 and $20,000
- Burglary – Georgian bond amounts vary for burglary, often based on what was stolen. In general, figure between $20,000 and $50,000
- Robbery – Depending upon the circumstances of the crime, bond amounts for robbery range between $25,000 and $100,000.
- Carjacking – Expect the bond amount to go up to $100,000
- Arson – The bond amount for arson ranges from $50,000 to $200,000
- Rape – In Georgia, rape is a “non-bondable offense”, meaning the local judge cannot set bail at your arraignment. Your attorney can request bail from a Superior Court Judge
- Murder – Like rape, in Georgia, murder is a non-bondable offense
Special Conditions of Georgia Bond
In addition to paying the Georgia bond amount set by the judge, there will be special conditions set on the bond. The court sets these conditions, which may include travel restrictions, substance abuse counseling, electronic monitoring, and employment. Whether you can leave the state of Georgia while on bond will be determined by these conditions. If you’re unclear on what is permissible, ask your bail bond agent.
Your Guide To the Bail Bond Process in Georgia
Simply Bail guides you every step of the way through the Georgia bail bond process. We help you choose from licensed bail bondsmen we have worked with and trust. We make it easy to complete all necessary documents and get your loved one out of jail entirely from your electronic device.
Simply Bail is the hassle-free way to bail someone out of jail in Georgia — fast.