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3 mistakes to avoid if you are out on bail

On Behalf of | Jan 19, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

People make mistakes all the time. If a mistake (like drunk driving) leads to your arrest and arraignment, the court may, subject to the nature of the charges, release you on bail while awaiting the outcome of your case. However, it is important to understand that bail is not an acquittal. For your bail to hold, you must observe its terms.

If you are out on bail, it is in your best interests that you understand what you can and cannot do. For example, the following are three missteps you’ll want to avoid while on bail.

Missing your court dates

Usually, the court will release an individual on bail on the condition that they will show up whenever they are required to do so. Your own bail conditions might include reporting to the court clerk or attending the hearing in person. If you miss any of these obligations without a justifiable cause, also known as jumping bail, then a number of things will likely happen. First, you will automatically forfeit your bail money. Next, a bench warrant will be issued against you. And, finally, you might face additional charges.

Committing a crime

This should be straightforward – you should never commit a crime under any circumstance. That said, if you already have an unresolved case, you do not want to get into trouble with the law. For instance, if you are facing DUI charges, you do not want to be arrested for another DUI. If this happens, your original bail might be revoked.

Interfering with investigations

Depending on what you’ve been charged with, chances are the prosecution will line up witnesses to testify against you. Contacting these witnesses to discuss the matter can put your freedom at risk. The same applies to contacting your accuser or discussing your case on social media. Besides bail revocation, doing any of these activities can potentially result in additional charges.

Protecting your rights

Even if it is a misdemeanor, being charged with a crime can be stressful. Understanding your obligations while out on bail can help you avoid missteps that can compound your legal woes.