Bail Bonds can be confusing, let alone dealing with the entirety of the situation of having a friend or loved one to be arrested and need bail. In this article we will discuss Bail Bonds, and the types of Bonds in Wyoming that courts set.
Disclaimer: However, though we are licensed to provide Bail Bond information and advice in Wyoming, we are not licensed attorneys, and nothing in this article should be construed as legal advice. We recommend always speaking with a licensed attorney prior to making any legal decision.
Eighth Amendment (8A)
One of the many things that makes our great Country is our constitution, the right to a fair trial, and the presumption of innocence, i.e., "the right to be innocent until proven guilty". Which brings us to 8A, "Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”
As we can best explain, one may not be incarcerated for a crime they did not commit, or not yet found guilty of. However, at the same time one may not be completely set free, off the hook pending trial, for a crime they have been charged under a reasonable amount of probable cause. Generally speaking, from this principle, comes the concept of bail bonds, dating all the way back to the 13th century, England.
Wyoming Rules of Criminal Procedure (W.R.Cr.P. Rule 46)
The Wyoming Rules of Criminal Procedure (W.R.Cr.P) are the rules set forth for courts dealing with criminal proceedings in Wyoming. Specifically Rule 46 outlines the procedure for ones release from custody, pending trial in Wyoming.
Rule 46.1 Pretrial Release
The first portion of this rule states, "All persons shall be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital cases when the proof is evident or the presumption great. Excessive bail shall not be required. When a person charged with the commission of a crime is brought before a court or has made a written application to be admitted to bail, a judicial officer shall order that such person be released or detained pending judicial proceedings, under this rule".
From there it goes on to say, "Request for Release. — Within four hours after a person is confined to jail, the custodial officer shall advise the person of the right to file a written request with the court to be granted pretrial release. The custodial officer shall provide the necessary writing materials".
Even further down says, ",all persons in custody who have made a request for pretrial release shall have the request considered by a judicial officer, with or without a hearing, without unnecessary delay, but in no event more than 72 hours".
Interpretation to this may be left open to us non-attorneys, but from our experience in Bail Bonds in Wyoming and us just knowing our own Federal and State constitutional rights in general. We have the right to Bail, unless being charged with a capital crime, it may not be excessive, and it should be considered by a court within 72 hours.
A copy of the Wyoming Rules of Criminal Procedure may be found by clicking here...
Types of Bonds
Now we move on to explain the types and differences of bond options available to us in Wyoming. Though there are really only two, the second one may come with a slue of other conditions requiring you to submit some form of property in one way or the other. The court considers mainly two things we considering bond and conditions, appearance in court of the accused, and safety of the community.
The first option to always be considered, unless it is determined otherwise, is the Release on Personal Recognizance or an Unsecured Appearance Bond. Often referred to as a "Promise to Appear". This bond could also come with a $dollar amount attached to it saying that you will pay that amount if you fail to appear.
The second option, if the court determines that a "Promise to Appear" may not be sufficient for our appearance or the safety to the community, they may set Release on Conditions. Which there are a many number of conditions allowed to be placed to reasonably assure our appearance in court or the safety to the community. We won't cover all these conditions, but only what matters in explaining Bail Bonds as it relates to us.
As a part of the conditions we may be required to put up property in some form, i.e., real property; or most typically cash or surety type property. The court may set a cash only type condition. Often referred to as a "Cash Only Bond". Which means we would be required to post the full amount of cash set by the court, and we would not be allowed to use any other form of property such as surety. The court may also require us to post only a percentage of the cash required as well. Often referred to as a "Percentage Bond".
Lastly, the court may allow us to post another form of property such as surety. Often referred to as a "Cash or Surety Bond". Simply put, as it relates to in this instance, surety is the legal term for a bail bondsman. A bail bondsman is a legal agent of a surety. A surety is large corporation with tons of money, who has made the Federal surety list. Most states will not allow a surety until they have made this list, and become authorized in that state.
Even though a bail bondsman is just an agent to the surety. The surety requires that the bail bondsman be liable for all surety they provide to a court and for a defendant. At the same time, both, the surety and the bail bondsman will require a cosigner/indemnitor for the surety that they are providing for a defendant so that they are not liable if the defendant fails to appear. This is often times the friend or family trying to arrange bail for their loved one. Who must sign a contract guaranteeing they will pay the money back if the defendant fails to appear.
Wyoming requires each surety to file the rate at which they will charge for a surety bond. At the time of this article, from our research, we have found that all surety companies have filed a 10% rate in Wyoming. This means that the bail bondsman will charge you 10% of what ever the full bond amount has been set by the court. Although, they may charge reasonable fees, in excess, for cost and expense as well.
We always recommend calling different bail bondsman prior to selecting one for their service. Be sure you understand exactly what they are charging and any fees they may require. As they may also require you to place collateral to secure the full bond amount. This is typical practice amongst all bail bondsman and surety companies. Though each one may have different options available for you.
For more information feel free to contact our office: Wyoming Bail Agency, 140 E. Midwest Ave, Ste 201, Casper, Wy 82601. 307-216-BAIL(2245) www.wyomingbailagency.com
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