Bond in a Federal Criminal Case
This guide provides information on factors that are considered by the court when a defendant is requesting bond in a federal criminal case.
DETENTION AND THE BAIL REFORM ACTFederal detention is governed by the Bail Reform Act (18 U.S.C. 3142)
Under the Act, it is the government's burden to show that NO CONDITIONS can be crafted to ensure:
A defendant's appearance in Court (by Preponderance of the Evidence) and/or
Safety of the Community or a specific person (by Clear and Convincing Evidence).
If the government cannot meet its burden, the Act requires release of the defendant on the least restrictive set of conditions that will meet the court's goals of appearance in court and safety of the community.
Factors that affect your chances of release:
the nature and circumstances of the offense;
weight of the evidence;
the defendant's character;
family and community ties;
record concerning appearance at court proceedings.
HOW A LAWYER CAN HELP YOU WITH A DETENTION HEARINGIt is important that you contact an experienced lawyer as soon as possible after an arrest so that the lawyer can begin preparing for your bond hearing. The lawyer will want to interview you, your family members, employers, and anyone else who can offer information to the Court to secure your release.