A defendant’s goal is to be let out on bail while they await their trial, while the prosecutor’s goal is usually to keep the defendant in jail during that time.
Trials can be months away from the bail hearing, so defendant’s who don’t get out on bail are stuck in jail for all that time while they wait. One of the biggest factors of whether or not a defendant will get out on bail is whether or not they have a good bail hearing lawyer representing them.
1. Preparation in key
Bail hearing lawyers need to be prepared. In order to convince the judge that the defendant deserves to be out on bail, and that they do not pose a risk while they are out on bail, the lawyer must be well prepared with facts and solid arguments. Ill-prepared lawyers will not be convincing, and will end up losing their argument. Bail hearings can move quickly, and one mistake by the lawyer could cost the defendant months of his or her life.
2. Losing is a huge disadvantage
Losing a bail hearing doesn’t just mean the defendant is stuck in jail while they await trial, it also often puts the defendant under more pressure to plead guilty. Defendants who are let out on bail often serve less time and plead guilty less often than defendants who are not let out on bail.
Without a good bail hearing lawyer, defendants are essentially shooting themselves in the foot from the start, and could end up serving a much longer sentence for a crime they did, or could end up sitting in jail awaiting a trial for a crime they are ultimately found innocent of.
3. Fighting for good bail conditions
Another benefit of hiring a good bail hearing lawyer is that if you do get let out on bail, they may also be able to negotiate good bail conditions as well. Bad bail conditions could mean not seeing friends or family, it could make it difficult to work or to run errands. In fact, bad bail conditions are almost as bad as jail. A good bail hearing lawyer will help their client get bail with reasonable conditions that they can live with until they go to trial.
Often, bail conditions will be related to the crime that the defendant allegedly committed. If the defendant is not able to follow the conditions of their bail, they will be re-arrested.
4. Making things happen quickly
A good bail hearing lawyer can also help to speed up processes. While the defendant is in jail awaiting their bail hearing, a lawyer can be getting to work. They can help get the bail hearing set to as soon as possible, and they can help get the defendant out of jail as soon as possible. In fact, they can sometimes even work with the police in order to avoid a bail hearing completely.
5. Keeping the defendant in the loop
Being arrested can be overwhelming and confusing for a person – whether they are guilty or not. A good bail hearing lawyer will be able to explain what the proceedings of the bail hearing are going to be like, and what is expected of the defendant. They will also help prepare the accused’s case, and may have to gather witnesses to speak on his or her behalf in order to prove good character to the judge, who will ultimately be deciding how strict the conditions will be.
The bail hearing lawyer’s first priority is to ensure that the defendant’s rights are being met throughout the bail hearing process, and to ensure that the defendant receives the best outcome possible.