Information » Law & Rights » Your Legal Rights and Legal Advice » Bail
- When you have been arrested and charged with an offence there will usually be a time delay before your case is heard in court or you get a reprimand or a final warning. During this time you can be kept on remand in a secure institution or you may be given bail.
There are two types of bail:
- Unconditional Bail this means you can go home and continue with your normal life until your case is heard in court or you get a reprimand or final warning.
- Conditional Bail has specified conditions, these can include:
- Having to stay indoors at certain times of the day or night (a curfew)
- Reporting to the police station or court at specified times each week
- You could be 'tagged' while you are on bail so you can be tracked and you have to be indoors at a certain time.
- You may have to stay away from the victim and the witnesses
- You can be told to live at home or with someone else during this time
- There are also bail hostels that you may be sent to see below
- Your solicitor will negotiate your bail; this will also include the Youth Offending Team if you aged between 11 and 18.
- If you do not keep the bail conditions, you can be arrested and not allowed to go home until your case has concluded.
Bail is Refused
- Bail can be refused for the following reasons:
- You have committed a crime whilst on bail before
- It is thought that there is a need to protect property or persons from damage and injury
- Your name and address are in doubt
- It is thought that you will not turn up in court.
- If you do not get bail you are held on remand
- If you are 17 or under on remand, you will usually be held in a children's home or with foster parents. Exceptionally you might be held in a secure unit.
- Remand can also be prison if you are 15 or over (if you are 15 or 16 this is usually in a special remand centre in a young offender's institution)
- Remand can go until your case is finished.
- This might be a few days or at the other extreme about 9 months.
- This may seem unfair because at this stage you have not been found guilty of anything.
- It is important that while you are waiting for your case that you try to remain positive, especially if you are innocent.
- Being held somewhere can be difficult if you are young and not used to the restrictions on your freedom.
- Bail hostels provide an 'enhanced' level of supervision for offenders and people on bail. They provide places for individuals at the various different stages of the criminal justice process including:
- Person on bail awaiting a court case
- Convicted person undergoing assessment
- Offenders on probation
- Released prisoners on licence
- Hostels operate strict rules governing behaviour, curfews are enforced and work programmes are agreed in order to reduce offending.
- Residents can also receive advice on personal issues, as well as employment training and help moving on into permanent accommodation.