How will the court decide if I get bail?

3. Prepare your strongest bail plan

When you go to your , you should have a plan that shows that you will be supervised enough to satisfy the court’s concerns about releasing you. That is why it’s important that you wait until you have the best plan possible before you try to get bail.

If you don’t, and the court rejects your plan, this can lead to a which means you will stay in until your case is resolved, goes to , or you’re released after a in the .

Finding a surety

Before someone will be allowed to act as a , they must:

  • attend court to be approved as your surety and to sign your bail papers,
  • be over the age of 18,
  • be a Canadian citizen or a landed immigrant,
  • not be involved in the the person in custody has been charged with,
  • be able to monitor you and ensure compliance with your conditions,
  • be willing to report a breach if one occurs, and
  • have some financial asset(s) they can pledge to the court as security

In most cases, your surety should not act for more than one person at a time. Ideally, your surety should not have a criminal record.

What a surety does

Having a surety can help the court with the concerns that:

  • You may not go to court when required.
  • You may commit another offence while on release, or the public may not be safe with you out on bail.

Depending on what you’ve been accused of doing, a surety may relieve the court’s concerns about the risks of letting you out on bail.

A surety can provide a high level of supervision by:

  • going with you to court and helping you keep track of court dates
  • making sure that you do not communicate with certain people
  • making sure that you do not attend at certain places
  • checking that you don’t have illegal drugs, weapons, or other items that are not allowed
  • visiting the place where you live to check that you’re following the conditions of your release
  • making sure that you’re following your bail conditions

If you do not follow your bail conditions, your surety is required to report you to the police. If you do not follow your bail conditions and your surety does not report you, the Crown can apply to have  your surety pay the amount of money they  pledged into court. This process is called an “”.

A residential surety provides a higher level of supervision because you must live with your surety. A residential surety can make sure that you follow a or conditions. These are the most restrictive forms of release that are available.

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