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Utah Criminal Lawyer - Bail Reduction Hearings

Before pulling out your checkbook or credit card and posting bail or going to a bail bonds company in Utah, you should speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney to ensure that you understand the options you have. There may be cheaper alternatives that can save you thousands of dollars. Understanding your options can help you make the best decision.

As an experienced Utah criminal defense attorney based in Salt Lake City, Stephen Howard has assisted clients in securing release from jail in a wide variety of felony and misdemeanor cases, saving them thousands of dollars. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.

Constitutional Right to Bail in Utah

Cash Bail / Bail Bond Companies Salt Lake City UtahArticle I Section 8 of the Utah Constitution guarantees to each person charged with a crime the right have bail set by the court. Under the United States Constitution's Eighth Amendment, the bail amount set must be reasonable ("excessive" bail is prohibited). The Utah constitution does provide for exceptions to the right to bail, including: capital cases (aggravated murder); new felony crimes committed while on probation, parole, or while on release for a pending felony; or when there is clear and convincing evidence that the person's release would pose a substantial danger to another person or the community, or that the person is likely to flee if released.

Bail Reduction / Bond Hearings in Utah

While our constitutions guarantee that bail should be set in most cases, the amount set initially by the court may be more than a person can afford or more than is necessary to secure the defendant's appearance. When a criminal case is initially filed in the Utah court system, the judge will determine the initial bail amount based only on information presented to the court by the prosecution. Utah law provides that a defendant is entitled to a hearing to determine whether the initial bail amount is appropriate and to give the defendant an opportunity to present arguments supporting the request for a bail reduction.

Factors considered by a court in determining whether to grant a bail reduction can include: the severity and nature of the crime; the defendant's criminal history; the defendant's current employment status; opportunities for treatment (drug or alcohol abuse, domestic violence, anger management, etc.); the defendant's housing situation; the defendant's ties to the local community (as it relates to flight risk); potential risks to the community or alleged victim; and other factors considered relevant by the court. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help present your case to the court in a convincing manner.

Options for Obtaining a Release from Jail in Utah

Posting a cash bail is only one option for securing your release from jail while a criminal case is pending in Utah. Other options include a supervised release, release on your own recognizance, or posting a bond through a bail bonds company. If your case is filed in a court in Salt Lake County, you may be eligible for release through Salt Lake County Pretrial Services.

While a cash bail will be refunded by the court once the criminal case is concluded (assuming that the defendant has appeared at all required court hearings), fees paid to a bail bond company are not refundable.  Even if bail cannot be reduced to a level where a defendant can post a cash bail, obtaining a bail reduction prior to contacting a Utah bail bond company can potentially save thousands of dollars in non-refundable fees.

Finding a Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah

Criminal Attorney Salt LakeBased in Based in Salt Lake City, criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard provides services to clients throughout Utah. He has successfully protected his clients' rights in thousands of serious felony and misdemeanor cases. His track record includes not guilty verdicts, dismissals, and appellate reversals in some of the most serious charges on the books in Utah.

Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.


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Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
340 East 400 South, Suite 25, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

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