Toronto Bail Hearings Lawyer
After an arrest for an alleged crime, the police can release you with a notice to appear in court, conduct further investigations, or hold you in custody. If you’re in custody, you have the right to be brought before the court for a bail hearing. This is typically held within 24 hours after an arrest or as soon as possible thereafter.
A bail hearing is a significant first step in every criminal case as you get to argue your case for release before a Justice. The importance of getting released on bail cannot be overstated, as it gives the accused their freedom and determines how they are presumed to be as the case proceeds. Retaining an experienced and knowledgeable lawyer for your bail hearing is paramount.
What is a Bail Hearing?
A bail hearing determines whether you should be released or remain in custody pending trial. In most bail hearings, the prosecution must “show cause” as to why you should remain in custody. However, in “reverse onus” cases, the defendant needs to justify why they should be released and why detention is not justifiable.
During a bail hearing, the judge considers several factors before making a decision:
- Whether the accused will show up in court for trial or upon request by the court
- Whether the accused identity is known
- The likely hood of the accused repeating a criminal act
- Whether all the evidence linked to the case has been obtained
Don’t take any chances during your bail hearing. Hire an experienced bail hearing lawyer ready to fight for your freedom and get you released on minimal conditions.
Why a Bail Hearing?
A bail hearing is an important initial part of criminal proceedings for several reasons. Let’s look at some of them:
To compel the accused to attend court in case:
- They have a history of failing to appear in court
- They are a flight risk
- They have a history of breaking court orders
Public safety and peace:
- The prosecution shows cause for the accused to remain in custody regarding public safety in cases where:
- They have been convicted of similar crimes.
- The Crown fears that the accused will hurt victims of his crime, witnesses, or other persons.
- They are accused or previously convicted of violent crimes
- They fear that the accused will commit more crime
Maintain confidence in the administration of justice by reviewing the following:
- The strength of the prosecution’s case
- The gravity of the criminal offence the accused is facing
- The circumstances surrounding the offence
Request to hold the accused in custody where:
- The investigation into the alleged offence is still ongoing
- The police are still gathering evidence
- The police and prosecution want to prevent contact between the accused and other persons involved.
A bail hearing offers you the opportunity to be released pending trial, giving you freedom and allowing you to work efficiently with your defence attorney. Contact with an expert bail hearing lawyer in Toronto for the best chance of getting released on minimal conditions.
Why You Need a Lawyer for A Bail Hearing
If you’re being held for a bail hearing, you should enlist the services of an expert bail hearing attorney. They play a pivotal role not only in your bail hearing but also in the proceedings thereafter.
Here are a few reasons why you need a lawyer for your bail hearing:
When in custody, a lawyer can:
- Negotiate with the police to release you without a bail hearing.
- Ensure that your bail hearing happens as soon as possible.
For the accused, a lawyer can:
- Explain the bail hearing process.
- Prepare a surety to secure your bail.
- Guide you on what to say or do in court.
- Arrange for witnesses to testify on your behalf during the hearing
- Answer any questions you may have about the hearing.
- Explain the bail hearing process to your family, including surety, providing bail, and bail conditions.
During the bail hearing, a lawyer:
- Ensures that the court sets reasonable conditions if you’re granted bail.
- Makes sure that your movement is not unnecessarily restricted, and you can work as needed, i.e., no restrictive curfews or house arrest.
Having a lawyer for your bail hearing substantially increases the chances of being released on bail. Therefore, if you or your loved one are in custody awaiting a bail hearing, call us at 647-4932808 to speak with a bail hearing attorney in Toronto.
What Happens at a Bail Hearing?
As mentioned earlier, a bail hearing occurs 24 hours after your arrest or as soon as possible after that. It’s held in a courtroom in front of a Justice, who makes the final decision on granting or denying you bail.
During a bail hearing, the Crown Attorney presents the charges made against you by the police. The Crown Attorney may decide to contest your release, where they show the justice why you should remain in custody pending. They may also support your release back into the community pending trial but ask the court to impose release conditions.
As your attorney, Zamani Law shows and convinces the court why you should be released from custody. Where necessary, you, as the accused, or your surety, takes the stand to provide evidence, which helps the court make the final decision. Remember, bail hearings are done on the presumption of innocence, meaning you don’t have to plead guilty to be granted bail.
If the court grants you bail, the Justice may impose certain conditions, depending on the case against you. As your defence firm, we will ensure they do not impose unrealistic and overly strict bail conditions.
Bail Hearings: Available Forms of Release
Although most people are used to the surety release plans, which are mainly meant to give the prosecution and justice system some peace of mind, the Criminal Code of Canada provides other forms of release. Let’s take a quick look at them:
Undertaking – the accused is released without conditions, requiring them to come to court as needed. In fact, given the presumption of innocence, the bail law requires the Justice to release an accused person without conditions or surety unless the Crown can show cause for a stringent release.
Recognizance – the accused is released with certain conditions and a financial penalty if they break any of them. There are several forms of recognizance, and they differ as follows:
- without sureties and no deposit of money or valuable security
- with sureties, but without deposit of money or valuable security
- without sureties, but with a deposit of money or valuable security
- with sureties and a deposit of money or valuable security
Whether you get released on recognizance or an undertaking depends on the prosecution’s case, previous convictions, and several other factors. As your legal counsel, Zamani Law strives to get you released on the best terms possible. Call us today to speak to a bail hearing attorney.
We Are Here to Help You with Your Bail Hearing
A bail hearing is not only a way to gain your freedom pending trial but also a determinant of how the rest of your case proceeds. Being denied bail means you’ll remain in custody for months or even years awaiting trial, limiting how you can work with your defence lawyer and wasting precious time in jail.
Don’t take any chances! Contact experienced bail hearing lawyers in Toronto to fight for your release.
Bail Hearings: Frequently Asked Questions
Why is a bail hearing so important?
If you’re arrested and placed in custody, it’s your constitutional right to be awarded a bail hearing within 24 hours or shortly thereafter. This initial step of your criminal case carries a significant impact on the entire proceeding of your case.
If you’re granted bail, you can work conveniently with your criminal defence lawyer to devise a strong defence for the allegations against you. You’ll also be able to work and be there for your family. When out on bail, you can join rehabilitation programs, which play a significant role in showing the court that you’re willing to change.
However, if you’re denied bail, you’ll remain in custody for months or even years awaiting trial. As per statistics, most people plead guilty after failing to make bail to “get out of jail” early.
Therefore, working with a meticulous and experienced lawyer can increase your chances of release.
What is a surety?
A surety is a supervisor approved by the court to ensure that you, as the accused, adhere to the release conditions. For the court to approve someone as your surety, they must take the stand to be examined and cross-examined to determine if they’re the right person to supervise you. Your surety takes on the onerous duty of notifying the authorities if you break the conditions imposed during your bail release. A surety pledges a certain amount of money, ranging from $500 to thousands of dollars, depending on your charges. If you breach the bail conditions, they stand to lose some or all of the pledged money or even face jail time if they fail to pay.
What qualifications must one meet to become someone’s surety?
For the court to approve you as a surety, there are several conditions that one must meet:
- not have a criminal record
- must know the accused well (close friend or family member)
- show that they are financially capable of meeting the pledged amount of money
- not be acting as a surety for anyone else
- not be involved in the criminal allegation that the accused person is facing
- be able to supervise the behaviour and actions of the accused
What determines my chances of success at a criminal bail hearing?
When it comes to securing your bail, there are many factors at play. Our firm analyzes all of them and finds possible solutions to any elements that might hinder your release. Some of the factors include:
- Your prior criminal records (if any)
- The gravity of the allegations against you
- The strength or weakness of the evidence in your case
- Quality of the potential surety
Apart from the above factors, the preparations made by your attorney and their litigation and negotiation skills play a massive role in the success of your bail hearing. Therefore, retain a knowledgeable and experienced lawyer to increase your chances of release.
What bail conditions can I expect?
If you’re granted bail, the court may impose certain conditions based on your charges. A good lawyer negotiates, ensures all conditions are fair, and does not unnecessarily restrict you from working or seeing your family. Some bail conditions include, but are not limited to:
- A prohibition from contacting any witnesses or victims, or other offenders involved in the offence
- A weapons prohibition
- A prohibition from taking any drugs or alcohol
- A requirement to find and maintain work
- To abstain from visiting or being near certain locations
- To remain within a specific jurisdiction
- To notify the authorities of any change of address or employment
- To report to the police as required
If an accused person fails to abide by the imposed bail conditions, they risk getting arrested and facing additional criminal charges. Their surety will also bear some consequences, including losing the pledged money for failure to supervise the accused adequately.
How long do bail conditions last in Ontario?
As long as your case is ongoing, you’ll be on bail and must comply with the conditions daily until your case is finished. This means that if you’re granted bail, you’ll be on it until one of the following happens:
- The charges are dropped.
- You plead guilty to the charges, and a sentence is rendered
- A trial is held, and you are found guilty or not guilty.
If you breach any of the imposed conditions, there’s a chance you’ll get arrested and remain in custody until your trial.
Since the trial might be years away, having harsh conditions can make it impossible for you to work or even interact with your family. Therefore, retain an experienced lawyer to negotiate favourable and workable terms.
What happens if bail is denied in Ontario?
If bail is denied in Ontario, the accused will remain in custody until their trial or until bail is granted later. The accused will be held in a correctional facility, such as a jail until their case is resolved. This can result in a prolonged period of incarceration before trial.
Remember, the denial of bail does not mean automatic guilt or conviction. The accused is still entitled to legal representation and will still have the opportunity to present their case and defend themselves during the trial. While in custody, the accused, with the assistance of their lawyer, will prepare their defence, gather evidence, interview witnesses, and engage in trial-related activities.
In certain circumstances of bail denial in Canada, the accused may seek a bail review or request a subsequent bail hearing if changes in events or new information may affect the court’s assessment of their release.
Can bail be revoked?
Yes, bail can be revoked in Canada under certain circumstances. If an accused person who has been released on bail fails to comply with the conditions set by the court, the Crown or the court itself may request to have the bail revoked. Some common reasons for bail revocation include the following:
- Breach of conditions – If the accused violates any conditions imposed on their bail, such as failing to report to a bail supervisor, contacting certain individuals, or adhering to specific curfew requirements, the court may revoke the bail.
- New charges – If the accused is arrested for new criminal charges while on bail, it may lead to the revocation of their existing bail.
- Flight risk – If there are concerns that the accused may attempt to flee or not appear in court as required, the court may revoke bail to ensure the accused’s presence at future court proceedings.
- Public safety concerns – If the court determines that the accused poses a danger to the public while on bail, they may revoke it to protect public safety.
When bail is revoked, the accused is typically taken back into custody until their trial or until new bail conditions are established.
How much does it cost to bail someone out of jail in Ontario?
The cost of bailing someone out of jail in Ontario can vary depending on several factors. Note that the bail amount itself is not a fee or cost but a monetary guarantee to ensure the accused’s appearance in court. Here are some potential expenses to consider:
- Surety fee – If a surety is required for bail, they may need to pay a fee to a bail bondsman or agent. This fee is typically a percentage of the total bail amount and is non-refundable.
- Legal fees – If you hire a lawyer to assist with the bail process, legal fees will be involved. The cost will vary depending on the lawyer’s experience, the complexity of the case, and the amount of work required.
- Administrative fees – Some bail agencies or surety companies may charge administrative fees for processing the bail paperwork and ensuring compliance with bail conditions.
- Travel expenses – If you need to travel to the jail or court for the bail process, there may be transportation costs to consider.
- Other expenses – Additional expenses can include costs related to securing collateral for the bail bond, such as property appraisal fees or charges for obtaining financial statements.
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I called Mr. Zamani not knowing what to do. Never having been in a situation like this before I was terrified. A family member needed my help and I needed his help. Mr. Zamani put me at ease with the first conversation. His is extremely professional, compassionate and knowledgeable. He was in constant contact with updates to help ease anxiety. Lawyer can be intimidating, but I feel safe and secure with Mr. Zamani. Thank you for your expert help and kindness. I highly recommend Mr. Zamani to navigate such challenges in life. Thank you!!!- Heidi van Vlymen