“Can I Bail Someone Out Of Jail Without Money?”
The question posed above is really two different questions rolled into one:
- “Can I get out of custody without Bail?” Yes – depending on a number of circumstances surrounding your case, you may be released from police custody pending trial without bail being required.
- “Can I post bail or a bond for free?” No – posting a bond without any money is illegal. Please be aware that any company offering to do so is violating the terms of their licence, breaking Connecticut state law and could cause substantial harm to the outcome of the defendant’s case.
Fortunately, you or your loved one can be released from jail without money in many circumstances. Connecticut has many laws for which you can be arrested, but is actually very fair when it comes to pretrial release, as described below.
Pretrial Release in Connecticut
In The State of Connecticut, unless you are accused of a serious crime, have a significant criminal history, or are considered dangerous or a flight risk it is likely you will not have a bond at all. In these circumstances most defendants are released on a “Promise to Appear” (PTA) or Non-Surety Bond. Either of these options will allow you to get out of custody without payment.
What is a PTA (Promise To Appear)?
A “Promise To Appear” is the closest we get to a “get out of jail free” card – the least restrictive form of pretrial release. PTA means You are being released on you own recognizance (known as an ROR in some other states). In this scenario, The State of Connecticut considers a written agreement to be sufficient guarantee that you will return to face trial at a later date.
What is a Non-Surety Bond?
As with a PTA, with a non-surety bond you do not have to post any money to be released: instead, you are released on your own recognizance. Like the PTA it also means that you sign a written agreement with the State of Connecticut promising to show up to any and all court dates for the pendency of your case. Unlike with a PTA, however, there will be a monetary amount underwriting this bond, and a treat of collection may be issued if you miss a court date. To our knowledge the state does not frequently collect the money on a forfeited non-surety, but the facility is there for them to do so.
Approximately 80% of all custodial arrests in Connecticut are released on one of these two forms of pretrial release, so the odds are good you will not need money.
PTAs and Non-surety Bonds, then, are the only ways you will get out either for free or with no money down. With both of these methods of release the court is taking you at your word that you will show up to court. This may seem lenient, but it is certainly not without consequences. Failing to attend a court date will result in a warrant being issued; once apprehended you will be arrested for a Failure to Appear (FTA) and your release without bail will be revoked. You may then be given a more substantial bail amount or you may even be remanded in custody pending trial.
If you do not meet the standards needed to qualify for a PTA or Non-Surety Bond, then the court will set an amount of bail required for your release. The amount of bail varies substantially and depends upon some or all of the following factors:
- The nature and severity of the crime alleged;
- The defendant’s criminal record;
- The threat posed by the defendant to individuals or to the community;
- An estimation of the defendant’s flight risk;
- The defendant’s conduct during arrest, custody and arraignment processes;
- The defendant’s financial resources.
Once bail is set, you will be given the option to pay the full amount as a cash bond – however, most people simply don’t have such amounts of money at their disposal, or would not be able to access adequate money quickly enough to help. At this point you or your loved one will need a Surety Bond, and that’s where we come in. The enforcement of Cash only bonds by judges was outlawed in Connecticut in 2017 by the passing of AN ACT CONCERNING PRETRIAL JUSTICE REFORM (https://www.cga.ct.gov/2017/ACT/pa/2017PA-00145-R00HB-07044-PA.htm); a judge cannot force a defendant in Connecticut to pay their entire bond in cash, though they may volunteer to do so. For most people, a surety bond from a bail bondsman is by far the best and most affordable option to help you with pretrial release.
What is a Surety Bond?
A Surety Bond (commonly referred to simply as a bail bond) is the payment of a small fee to a bail agent, which is a fixed percentage based on the total amount of bail. Connecticut’s bail bond rates are determined by law as follows:
|Bail Amount||Bond Amount|
|Up to $500||$50 (fixed rate)|
The amount of the bond does not have to be paid in full straight away. Instead, an easy monthly payment plan can be used. When using a payment plan, 35% of the BOND amount – not the BAIL amount, which is much higher – must be placed initially as a deposit. An example below:
- BAIL AMOUNT: $12,000
- BOND AMOUNT (estimated): $990
- Minimum deposit required for payment plan: $346.50
A bail calculator available here, which can be used to display bond and deposit amounts for any bail in accordance with Connecticut state law.NB: Surety bonds usually require one or more suitable cosigners as a guarantor, who are often family members, friends or business associates in good financial standing.
What other options are available?
If you are truly penniless, you have a few more no money down options:
- The first is to go to an arraignment. If you do not have an attorney a court appointed attorney will be assigned most likely for the arraignment only (If you need an attorney recommendation, please give us a call as we work with some of the best in the state). Keep in mind that arraignment is a scary option, and the outcome is by no means guaranteed to benefit you: the bond may be reduced, but may also stay the same or even be increased.
- You can use an asset to pay for your bond like a car, bike or anything that has sufficient value.
- The final avenue is to let the defendant stay in jail for 45 days, then file a motion for a bail reduction. These are not easy motions to win, and you may want to hire an attorney for the motion. However, a defendant can certainly try to file one.
- The court will also automatically review some bonds depending on the charges.
What if I need to post a bond but I don’t have the money?
Our staff at BailCo understand many families have little to no money saved for emergencies such as an unexpected arrest. This can be a difficult time, and because of the fast nature of the legal events that take place it’s easy to make a bad choice on who you choose to assist you with your bond. We will do our best to work with you (within the law) to make the process as painless as possible – and a bond can be much more affordable than you might think. An example:
- Bail Amount: $10,000.00
- Cost of bond: $850.00
- Minimum deposit: $297.50
Even with bail of $10,000, which is much higher than average, you can secure you or your loved one’s freedom immediately for less than $300 – and less than 3% of the bail amount – with BailCo.
So there you have it – a definitive answer to the question ‘How do I bail someone out of jail without any money?’ It’s not the shortest answer by any means, and it doesn’t match up with the answers to the same question given by other, less reputable bond agencies. Here at BailCo we want to make sure you have accurate information about pretrial release, rather than misleading you.
The information we have given here is, to the best of our knowledge and information a 100% ACCURATE description of the conditions pertaining to pretrial release in The State of Connecticut. If you know otherwise, or if you can demonstrate any sort of error or omission in the information about bail that we’ve given here, please contact us and we will correct it.
Bail is EVERY resident of the United States’ constitutional right, and in most cases it should be granted as a matter of routine. Bail bondsmen and the whole bail industry have developed a negative reputation in recent years, and although there is a lot of distortion and misinformation in the media about bail bonds, at least some of the blame for this poor reputation lies with a minority of disreputable bail bondsmen. We at BailCo are doing everything we can to change that. We hope that by offering clarity, professionalism, sensitivity and excellent service we can show and uphold the fundamentally positive role that bail bonds play in the judicial system. We sincerely hope that you never need our service; but, if by any chance you do, you will be glad that you called us.