Bond Hearings

Bond HearingsHas someone you know or love been arrested in Charleston, Berkeley, or Dorchester County?

The initial step of any arrest is making sure you understand and retain the Attorney for the Bond Hearing. An arrest can cause panic and confusion for family and friends. The Law Office of Peter David Brown, P.A. understands that experience, familiarity with the Judge and a strong reputation with the court counts when looking for the best Attorney to represent your loved one for their Bond Hearing. We know that it is important for individuals to be able to bring their loved one home and not have them sitting in jail. However, quick and unadvised decisions can often cost families and friends financially and result in the detained person unnecessarily spending additional days or weeks in jail.

It can be extremely useful and is advised to have an experienced attorney who can prepare quickly and effectively to represent your loved one for their Bond Hearing. Attorney Peter Brown has been handling Bond Hearings for clients for over thirty (30) years and he has maintained well-earned relationships with the local judges. His associate, Attorney Donald Sorenson, brings an additional twenty-five (25+) plus years of stellar courtroom experience to the firm, making them well suited to handle your loved one’s Bond Hearing. They will fight to get your loved one the best and lowest bond possible.

What is a Bond Hearing?

A Bond Hearing, sometimes known as a Bail Hearing, is usually the first thing to happen after a person is booked in jail after an arrest and the Bond Hearing should be held within twenty-four (24) hours. In South Carolina, the hearing is heard in front of a Magistrate or Municipal Court Judge or a Circuit Court Judge. At the hearing the Judge determines whether the individual should be let out until further court appearances, and if so under what conditions and for what price.

Under S.C. Code section 17-15-10 a person charged with a noncapital offense in the magistrates, county or circuit court shall be ordered released pending trial on his own recognizance without surety, unless the court determines in its discretion that such a release will not reasonably assure the appearance of the person as required, or unreasonable danger to the community or an individual will result. There are certain terms of release that may be considered when a Judge considers bond.

Types of Bonds

A Personal Recognizance Bond allows for the defendant to return home while awaiting any court appearances without putting any money down in the process. This a bond based on the Court’s trust that the individual will appear for all court dates. A retained attorney at the Bond Hearing shows the Court that the defendant is taking the arrest seriously and will be present for future court dates and is therefore less of a flight risk.

A Cash Bond is when a Judge sets the monetary amount of money required for the individual to post to be able to get out of jail. If the individual makes all their court appearances, that money will be returned. Should they fail to appear, the Court may keep this money.

A Surety Bond is set by a Judge with monetary value to assure the individual will make all court appearances. Surety according to S.C. Code Section 38-53-10(11) is defined as a means who, with the defendant, is liable for the bail bond. The most typical form of this is where an individual pays a bondsman 5%-10% of the bail amount to have them handle the surety for them. If an individual misses court the bail is forfeited (they will most likely be hunted down by their bail bondsman). This is a way judges can reasonably ensure individuals make their appearances. It is important to note that bail bondsman do not return the initial percentage paid to them, that is how they make their money. This is why you need an experienced bond attorney to obtain the lowest bond possible, therefore saving you money.

What if My Loved One is Denied Bond or Cannot Afford Bond?

Sometimes an individual may be denied bond because of a prior violent offense pending or certain other circumstances. A Motion to Set Bond can be filed and held in front of a Judge to argue why the individual should have the opportunity to have a bond set. In cases where the Bond amount may be too high, a Motion to Reconsider Bond can be filed to allow for facts to be brought forth to allow the bond terms to be reconsidered. Attorneys Peter Brown and Donald Sorenson have handled hundreds of Bond settings and reconsiderations and have the experience and relationships to give an individual a very good chance at receiving a bond or reconsidering the terms.

We know how hard it can be dealing with the initial onset of fear and stress regarding an unfortunate arrest of your loved one. Let us fight for them and trust our experience to work for you!