State vs. Federal Bail

Federal Bonds vs State Bail Bonds

State bail bonds, and Federal bonds are very different, and it would not be wise to confuse them.  State bail bonds are actually regulated by each individual state, and rely on the state’s set bail schedule.  In the majority of state cases, the defendant can be granted freedom if they qualify for a state bail, prior to their court case.

In the case where a defendant has been charged with a federal crime, they are required to appear before a Magistrate who will in turn set the bail.  A Magistrate has the power to release a defendant on their own recognizance, issue unrestricted bail, or even a bail with restrictions.  Some of the restrictions include, being prohibited from travel, made to seek employment, mandatory drug and/or alcohol testing, and even submitting to psychological, psychiatric, or even medical testing.  Federal bonds do not have a set bail schedule, like state bail does.  It is up to the discretion of the Magistrate, as to the amount of the federal bond.  It is natural to assume that a federal bail will be more expensive than that of a state bail.

There are actually over 4,500 crimes that can result in federal prosecution.  Some examples of federal crimes include:

  • Customs Violations
  • Kidnapping
  • Tax Evastion
  • Bank Robbery
  • Counterfeiting
  • Mail Fraud
  • Organized Crime
  • Importation of Illegal Drugs

These are just a very few of the crimes that will automatically cause federal charges.

In the case of a federal arrest, it is normal for the bail bond to cost 15% of the entire bail amount, unlike the 10% in state bail bonds cases.  For example, if $50,000 is the amount set on the federal bail, then a federal bail bond will cost $7,500.   Federal bail bonds normally take longer to process than state bail bonds, and therefore require much more work from the bail bondsman, or bail bond agency.  The rate that a federal bail bonds company can charge is regulated, the same as state bail.

If you or someone you know is charged with a federal crime, it is imperative that you contact a reputable, and experience bail bonds company.  Federal charges are not something you should attempt to handle on your own.