Cambridge, Bail Reduction Attorneys
Being able to post bail is an important aspect of our criminal justice system. It affords you the freedom to live outside of a jail or house of corrections while you move through the courts following an arrest. However, bail is a privilege, not a guaranteed right following every crime. Much goes into whether or not you’re eligible for bail, how much that bail might cost and whether or not you can get that figure reduced. Fortunately, the expert bail attorneys at Altman & Altman LLP have the answers to these questions.How is Bail Set?
Bail is set at the discretion of a clerk magistrate or a judge. In the case of less serious crimes, such as misdemeanor shoplifting or vandalism, bail likely will not even enter the equation. Following your arraignment, you will be released on what is called your “own recognizance,” aka “OR.”
However, for other crimes, the prosecuting attorneys in a particular case may wish to request that you be given a higher scrutiny for being let free while your case progresses. This is where a bail amount would be posted. The amount of bail directly correlates to various factors, such as:
- The nature and severity of the alleged crime
- Your criminal history
- If you have failed to appear for court proceedings or have had outstanding warrants in the past
- If the court considers you a “flight risk,” meaning they are concerned you may try to flee
- If the crime was related to Section 209A of the Massachusetts General Laws, such as a domestic violence or sexual assault on a household/family member
The judge will hear arguments from the prosecution about their concerns and reasoning for why a bail should be set at a certain level, however if you have hired a defense attorney for these proceedings, the judge must also allow you to make a case for what you believe the bail should be set at. These discussions are what is known as a bail hearing.
Presenting a solid counter-argument at this bail hearing provides the best initial chance to have a low bail set, as it is the burden of the prosecution to present its case for why bail should be set higher than you might think is necessary, or higher than you can reasonably afford. Our defense attorneys will take the time to get to know everything about you, your history and your case to ensure we can present the best counter-argument and get bail set at a reasonable amount.Reducing Bail
In some cases, despite a good argument from a defense attorney, bail still might be posted at an amount you believe is unreasonably high – which could be a violation of the U.S. Constitution, as Amendment Eight of the Bill of Rights forbids the posting of excessive bail in criminal proceedings.
It is important to understand that you have the guaranteed right to appeal a bail decision reached by a judge. In this case, a bail review process would begin. Once again, this is where our expertise will be essential to possibly reducing the bail amount. We will be able to present our facts and arguments as to why we believe the bail was set too high, and why you are not a risk of the factors such as failing to show up to court hearings or fleeing in general.
With over 50 years of experience advocating on behalf of our clients, the defense attorneys at Altman & Altman LLP are well versed in bail reduction and how to ensure that you are able to proceed through the courts in dignity, rather than behind bars. We understand how burdensome a high bail could be to your family or friends who would seek to post it, so we will provide you the best opportunity to lower the total bail amount.
The only way to possibly lower a bail is by hiring a practiced defense attorney and sharing the precise details of your case, so don’t waste a single minute following an arrest. Contact us online or call for a free consultation to go over the details of your case today at 617-492-3000 or toll-free at 800-481-6199. We are available 24/7.