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FAQ

Traditionally, bail is some form of property deposited or pledged to a court to persuade it to release a suspect from jail, on the understanding that the suspect will return for trial or forfeit the bail (and possibly be brought up on charges of the crime of failure to appear). If a bondsmann is used and a surety bond has been obtained, the fee for that bond is the fee for the insurance policy purchased and is not refundable.

This process of bail is regulated by the State of Louisiana. A Affordable Bail Bonds and all other bail agents will charge a 12% fee for the bond. Once the payment has been made, the bond is then posted, and the defendant is released.

Under current law, a defendant has an absolute right to bail if the custody time limits have expired and otherwise ordinarily a right to bail unless there is sufficient reason not to grant it. Any person accused of committing a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Therefore a person charged with a crime, should not be denied freedom unless there is a good reason. The main reasons for refusing bail are that the defendant is accused of an imprisonable offence and there are substantial grounds for believing that the defendant would:

  1. abscond, or
  2. commit further offences whilst on bail, or
  3. interfere with witnesses.

The court should take into account:

  1. the nature and seriousness of the offence or default (and the probable method of dealing with the defendant for it),
  2. the character, antecedents, associations and community ties of the defendant,
  3. the defendant’s bail record, and
  4. the strength of the evidence.

The court may also refuse bail:

  • for the defendant’s own protection;
  • where the defendant is already serving a custodial sentence for another offence;
  • where the court is satisfied that it has not been practicable to obtain sufficient information;
  • where the defendant has already absconded in the present proceedings;
  • where the defendant has been convicted but the court is awaiting a pre-sentence report, other report or inquiry and it would be impracticable to complete the inquiries or make the report without keeping the defendant in custody;
  • where the defendant is charged with a non-imprisonable offence, has already been released on bail for the offence with which he is now accused, and has been arrested for absconding or breaching bail.

Where the accused has previous convictions for certain homicide or sexual offences, the burden of proof is on the defendant to rebut a presumption against bail.

Conditions may be applied to the grant of bail, such as living at a particular address or having someone act as surety, if the court considers that this is necessary:

  • to prevent the defendant absconding;
  • to prevent the defendant committing further offences whilst on bail;
  • to prevent the defendant interfering with witnesses; or
  • for the defendant’s own protection (or if he is a child or young person, for his own welfare or in his own interests).

In addition to the bond fee, there are two things that a cosigner needs to bail someone out of jail:

  1. Valid State ID
  2. Employment History

Cash, Credit Card or Money Order.

It will take about 10 minutes.

A cosigner, someone willing to sign for the defendant, is responsible for the following three things:

  1. To make sure the defendant makes all appearances to court
  2. To make sure the defendant notifies A Affordable of changes to their address, phone or employment
  3. To make sure the premium is paid (if applicable)

The responsibilities of a defendant are the following:

  1. Upon being released, the defendant will need to immediately report to the local office and complete the necessary paperwork. After completion, the defendant will receive upcoming court date information.
  2. The defendant must show up to all court dates

There are several benefits to consider:

  1. Defendants can go back to work, school, home, family, and continue with usual daily life.
  2. Permits the unhampered preparation of a defense.
  3. Serves to prevent the infliction of punishment prior to conviction.