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Ken is a NJ trial attorney who has published 130 articles in national and New Jersey publications on litigation topics. He has been selected to write the new ABA book: DUI and Drug Possession Defense".

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Types of Bail

Types of Bail

When bail is set, it can be satisfied in one or more of the following ways

1. Cash Bail

The defendant or surety must deposit with the court a certain amount of money. A surety is a person, other than defendant, who is posting bail.

Full Cash

Full cash bail must be posted when a defendant is charged with certain crimes of

the first or second degree as enumerated at N.J.S.A. 2A:162-12a. and the defendant

1. has two other indictable cases pending at the time of the arrest;

2. has two prior convictions for a first or second degree crime or for

a violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-7 or any combination thereof; 12

3. has one prior conviction for murder, aggravated manslaughter,

aggravated sexual assault, kidnapping or bail jumping; or

4. was on parole at the time of the arrest.

Ten Percent Cash Bail

Except in first or second degree crimes as set forth in N.J.S.A. 2A:162-12 and unless the order setting bail specifies the contrary, whenever bail is set pursuant to R. 3:26-1, bail may be satisfied by the deposit in court of cash in the amount of ten percent of the bail amount, and by the defendant executing a recognizance for the remaining ninety percent. Under the Court Rules, ten percent cash bail is presumed when the judge sets an amount, unless the judge orders otherwise. See R. 3:26-4(g). When ten percent cash is deposited with the court and is owned by someone other than the defendant, the owner of the cash cannot charge a fee other than the lawful interest. See R. 3:26-4(g).

2. Corporate Surety Bonds

A corporate surety bond usually is posted by a bail agent (bondsman) who represents an insurance company that is approved by the commissioner of the Department of Banking and Insurance. The bail agent must have a power of attorney from the insurance company. The bond is a contract between the court and the insurance company whereby the insurance agency agrees to be responsible for the full amount of the bail should the defendant fail to appear in court.

3. Property Bonds

For a property bond, the defendant or a surety posts real property, (e.g., a house) to satisfy the bail amount. In order to post real property, the defendant or surety must provide the court with the following information in accordance with

N.J.S.A. 2A:162-12:

1. a legal description of the property;

2. a description of each encumbrance on the real property; 13

3. the market value of the unencumbered equity owned by the

affiant as determined in a full appraisal conducted by an appraiser

licensed by the state of New Jersey; and

4. a statement that the affiant is the sole owner of the

unencumbered equity.

If real property is going to be posted for a crime with bail restrictions as identified in N.J.S.A. 2A:162-12a, the property must be located in New Jersey with an unencumbered equity equal to the amount of the bail undertaken plus $20,000.