If your loved one has been arrested, you should secure bail to get released. Unless you have previously dealt with the California judicial system, the odds are you learned what you know and understand about Costa Mesa bail bonds and bail from movies. Steven Mehr Bail Bonds is a premier bail bonding agency that understands that there is more to the process than the judge setting the bail amount. As a result, we urge you to continue reading to learn what bail is, how it works, what to do if you cannot afford one, and who is a bondsman.

Defining Bail

In layman's language, bail is the agreement between the suspect and the court. The accused person agrees to attend all the scheduled court hearings, and the judge refunds the funds once the case is closed. If the set bail amount is ten thousand dollars, then you should pay the ten thousand dollars to the jurisdiction holding you in return for being released.

If you fail to hold up your end of the bargain and miss court hearings, the court will forfeit the bail money and issue an arrest warrant. If you attend the proceedings, you will receive your money back once the case is resolved, regardless of whether you are convicted of the crime or not.

When and How Bail is Set?

After your arrest, the police will book you into jail. Booking means your name and personal details are entered into the police computer, your fingerprints and photographs taken, and your property held in impound. You are also permitted to make a phone call before the police lock you in the cell. Additionally, an arraignment hearing is scheduled within forty-eight hours of the arrest. During the hearing, the judge determines your bail amount.

In most California counties, defendants can post bail with the police even before appearing at the arraignment. The bail schedules specify bail amounts for common offenses. You can obtain release immediately after paying the amount outlined in the bail schedule.

Is there a problem with using a bail schedule? Most people are arrested for severe crimes under the circumstances. For instance, a person in possession of controlled substances might face drug trafficking charges instead of possession even if possession is more plausible and there is no evidence proving trafficking. That means the required bail amount under the bail schedule might be higher. While the prosecution can file a lesser charge later, this will not affect the bail's amount under the bail schedule.

The judge has the discretion of raising or lowering the bail amount.

The judge considers public safety when setting bail. If, for instance, you threaten a witness, you will pay a huge bail amount. The judge will also consider your community ties, for example, your family's residence, your involvement in the community, employment situation, and the ability to travel outside the U.S (whether you have a passport or visa).

Other factors the judge puts into account include:

  • Whether you’re a flight risk or not

  • The seriousness of the alleged crime

  • Your criminal record

  • History of jumping bail

  • History of substance abuse and mental health condition

  • Current parole or probation status

Sometimes, the court releases the defendants on their own recognizance. In this scenario, the defendants do not pay any bail but promise to appear in court when required.

Posting Bail

You can post bail using either of the following ways:

  • Through cash bail — To be released on cash bail, you should deposit the entire amount with the arresting agency or the court clerk. Depending on the jurisdiction's policy, you can pay by cash, personal check, money order, cashier's check, or traveler's check. You'll receive a refund 60 to 90 days after the case resolution if you make all court appearances.

  • Through bail bonds — If the set bail amount is more than you or your family can afford, then seeking the services of a bail bondsman might be your best option. The agent will post your bail amount in exchange for a percentage of your bail amount. Typically, the premium is ten percent of the total bail amount and is non-refundable.

  • Using property bonds — The defendant allows the court to place a lien on their property, and if you skip bail, the court can institute a foreclosure proceeding against you.

How Costa Mesa Bail Bonds Work

Bail bonds can be likened to a loan in that you pay a small portion of your total bail amount, and a bail bond agent pays the rest. If your bail amount is ten thousand dollars, you will give your bail agency one thousand dollars, and the company will post the entire amount to the court.

Since the bail bonding agency accepts financial risk, it will take measures to make sure that you comply with your court conditions and attend the court dates. These precautions include:

  • First, the company will have a loved one put up collateral for your bail bond. Collateral can be a home, jewelry, stocks, bonds, or jewelry. Generally, the collateral should be valuable and in good shape.

  • Second, the agency will contact you before every court hearing reminding you about your pending court hearing.

  • Third, you might be required to make frequent check-ins at your bondsman's office to ensure that you have not left town.

If you fail to appear in court or attempt to flee the jurisdiction and your bondsman cannot reach you, they can engage a bounty hunter to locate you, apprehend you, and have you returned to jail.

Nonetheless, the court could vacate the forfeiture order and exonerate your bond if you show up in court within 180 days of the forfeiture date. Additionally, you should have a valid excuse, including:

  • Injuries

  • Mental conditions

  • Disabilities

  • A health condition established by a medical statement, record, or report

Can a Qualified Defense Lawyer Assist With Bail?

Any seasoned bondsman in Costa Mesa will tell you that a criminal defense lawyer can assist you with your bail. During bail amount determination, the judge will evaluate if you are a flight risk and whether you are a threat to your community or yourself.

If you have already spent money to retain a lawyer, it conveys messages to the court that you are planning to remain in the jurisdiction. It's especially true if the judge knows the legal counsel. A judge will perceive that the money you have paid your lawyer as a form of assurance of making your court appearances.

Additionally, when a defendant requests bail during the arraignment, the judge might reply that the defendant should consult with their attorney. If the lawyer deems it appropriate, they can file a bond hearing. Typically, this happens when the judge is uncomfortable granting bail and requires more information regarding the defendant and the situation. Unless you are an attorney, you probably do not know how to schedule the bond hearing. The sooner your attorney schedules the hearing, the sooner the judge hears evidence and why you should be granted bail.

Most people don't know that a lot of things in the judicial system have nothing to do with the California law but the judge's preference and personal quirks. When hiring a lawyer, ensure you choose a local counsel with an excellent professional relationship with the prosecutor and the judge.

For instance, one judge might be skeptical of the efficiency of a drug treatment program and won't find the argument to be convincing for granting a bond. On the other hand, another judge could be concerned about community ties and will not grant bail unless the defendant has employment or a loved one has attended the court hearing. If the lawyer does not understand the judge's unwritten rules, the defendant is at a disadvantage.

Your Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Aid Get the Bail Amount Reduced

Your lawyer can help you have your total bail amount reduced by presenting materials, witnesses, and materials that show the court that you are neither:

  • a threat to your community or yourself, nor

  • a flight risk.

The lawyer can also suggest bail conditions to an adamant judge. These conditions include:

  • Surrendering your passport and driver's license

  • Setting you up with anger management therapy or drug treatment

  • GPS monitoring

  • Frequent check-ins with a probation officer

What Steps Do You Need to Take After Being Released on Bail?

Different aspects of life might change following your arrest, and some entities might go a long way to ensure you follow the proper steps to return your life on track. While posting bail might feel like freedom, there are several goals and objectives to achieve before you can enjoy true freedom.

The guide below will help you get on the right path, so no challenges happen until your criminal case is closed.

Communicate With Your Boss

If you're employed during the arrest, you ought to check in with your boss immediately. Be honest and open about your criminal charges and future court appearance. You don't want to be detained and lose employment on the same day.

An arrest doesn't necessarily mean a conviction. Don't overlook things and assume you will lose your job. Open communications with your employer allow you to go back to work. It also avoids any scheduling conflict with your future court meetings or dates. By keeping your job, you can afford to hire an attorney to build your defense, continue being a productive member of society, and return to your everyday life.

Speak With the Co-signer

When you pay your bail via a Costa Mesa bondsman, you might require an indemnitor to post the required fee. The agency might also require your co-signer to use their motor vehicle or home as collateral.

After your release, you should talk to the co-signer. Your co-signer might search for payback or require an assurance that you will adhere to your bail terms and attend your court hearings.

If a payback strategy is sought, you ought to lay everything clearly and set goals. Having scheduled payments allows you to pay the amount without pressure.

Since the co-signer wants to stand with you through this devastating time, communication and respect play a significant role in maintaining a healthy relationship.

Schedule the Court Dates

After the release on bonds, you need to understand that you have court hearings to attend. Pay attention to the release and know when the proceedings are.

Should you skip bail, the court will revoke the bail and have you detained in police custody until the criminal case closes.

Once you have the court hearing dates, come up with methods to remind yourself of them. It can be:

  • Setting a reminder in your phone

  • Having hand-written reminders on your refrigerator's door or calendar

Ensure you do this for all your court hearings.

Frequently Asked Questions

Understanding the Costa Mesa bail bonds process is complicated. Steven Mehr Bail Bonds is ready to answer all your questions. If you fail to answer your question below, please get in touch with us immediately.

Is a Bail Bond a Public Record?

The fact that you were detained is a public record. Your arrest record might also highlight the bonding agency that posted your bail. However, the agency should comply with the stringent code of confidentiality. The information could only be made public if the prosecutor subpoenas the details from your agency as evidence.

Are Bail Bonds Available on Weekends?

Yes, they are. Life occurs every time, and Steven Mehr Bail Bonds offers 24/7 services. Being detained is devastating, and we are glad to help you through this process and get you released as soon as possible.

How Long Does It Take to Be Released from Jail After Posting Bail?

There is no definite answer. Usually, the process can take thirty minutes to eight hours. The agent has no control over your release after they post bail. It depends on factors like:

  • The number of clerks at the jurisdiction at the moment

  • The number of people waiting in the line

  • The number you are in the line

  • The time of the day

What Happens If You Do Not Have the Entire Bond Premium?

If you don't have the entire amount, your seasoned bail bond agent might offer affordable payment plans if you qualify.

Costa Mesa Police Department and Jail Information

Police Mesa Police Department

99 Fair Drive,
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Phone: (714) 754-5280

Costa Mesa City Jail

99 Fair Drive,
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Phone: (714) 754-5113

Orange County Central Men’s Jail

550 N Flower St,
Santa Ana, CA 92703

Phone: (714) 647-4666

Find a Competent Bondsman in Costa Mesa Near Me

Have you been arrested and taken to police custody? It could be due to a conspiracy or misunderstanding. If you want to prove your innocence, you should work on your release to build your defense. To achieve this, you will require bail bonds. At Steven Mehr Bail Bonds, we are committed to ensuring that you return to your everyday routines as soon as possible. We can offer you bail bonds at any time of the day at a pocket-friendly cost. Contact us now at 800-834-8522 to learn how we can help you.