State vs. Federal Bail

State Bail Bonds vs. Federal Bonds

Federal bonds are very different to State bail bonds, and the two should never be confused.  State bail bonds permit a defendant to leave custody prior to their trial.  State bail bonds are regulated by the respective state, and are reliant upon a set bail schedule, whereas Federal bonds are not.

If a defendant has been charged with a federal crime, they are required to appear before a Magistrate prior to bail being set.  The Magistrate has the authority to release a defendant on their own recognizance, unrestricted bail, or even with a bail that contains restrictions and conditions.  Mandatory drug and/or alcohol testing could be part of the conditions, as could travel restrictions, or even submitting to medical testing, and even psychiatric evaluations.  Unlike State bail, Federal bonds do not have a set bail schedule, as these are set at the discretion and determination of the Magistrate.   It is fair to say that federal bails will be much higher than those set by a state bail.

Currently, over 4,500 different crimes can result in federal prosecution.

Some examples of these are:

  • Kidnapping
  • Bank Robbery
  • Organized Crime
  • Importing Illegal Drugs
  • Mail Fraud
  • Customs Violations
  • Tax Evasion
  • Counterfeiting

These are only a few of the very serious crimes that will automatically result in federal charges.

In the event someone has been arrested for a federal crime, the normal cost is 15%, of the entire bail amount as opposed to the 10% required by state bail bonds. For example, if the federal bail amount has been set at $50,000, then the 15% cost of the federal bail bond will be $7,500.  Federal bail bonds always take longer to process than state bail bonds, and will therefore require a lot more work from the bail bondsman, or bail bonds firm.  As with state bail, the rate that a bail bonds company can charge for handling a federal bail, is regulated.

If you or someone you know are arrested for a federal crime, it is most important that you contact a reputable, and experienced bail bonds company immediately.  Handling a federal case on your own, is never recommended.