Anatomy of a Personal Bond Jail Release

Anatomy of a Personal Bond Jail Release


Q: What is the Travis County personal bond jail release process?

A: The Travis County personal bond jail release process begins with an arrest, followed by booking into the system, which appears online in the Travis County jail. This process includes several steps like turning in a probable cause affidavit, attorney involvement, pretrial services interviews, and possible magistrate and judge decisions.

Q: How long does it take for someone to be entered into the system after arrest?

A: Typically, it takes about 45 minutes to an hour for someone to be entered into the Travis County jail system after their arrest.

Q: What is the role of a probable cause affidavit in this process?

A: The officer must submit a probable cause affidavit to start the release process. They have 24 hours for a misdemeanor and 48 hours for a felony to turn in this affidavit. The jail release process cannot begin until this document is submitted.

Q: What happens if an attorney does not start working on a jail release?

A: If an attorney does not initiate the jail release process, pretrial services will eventually interview the arrested individual for a personal bond, considering their living and working situation and other references.

Q: In what order do the steps in the jail release process occur?

A: The steps, including pretrial interviews, magistrate decisions, and reference checks, can occur in slightly different orders but are generally done around the same time.

Q: What factors can affect a judge's decision to sign a PR bond?

A: A judge's decision to sign a Personal Recognizance (PR) bond may be influenced by factors like inability to confirm information provided by the accused or negative aspects of their case.

Q: How can an attorney assist in the jail release process?

A: An attorney can be valuable in overcoming obstacles during the jail release process. They can work to address issues that might cause the judge or pretrial services to stop the process. An attorney can also expedite the process by waiving certain steps, like magistration.

Q: What is the typical duration of the jail release process in Travis County?

A: The entire process can take anywhere from 16 to 30 hours, although it may vary depending on specific circumstances.

Q: Can an attorney guarantee a faster release from jail?

A: While an attorney can help make the process smoother and potentially faster, they cannot guarantee a specific timeline due to the various steps and potential obstacles involved.

What is a personal bond?

It is a bond that releases someone from jail (without having to pay a bail bondsman or put up cash). It is provided by Travis County and must be approved by a judge. There is a small fee (usually between $20 and $150) that must be paid within 7 days after the release. The amount of the fee will be notated on a yellow coupon that is included in the release paperwork.

Can a defense attorney help get a personal bond if the judge doesn’t automatically approve one? Can they help get the bond approved faster?

Yes, a defense attorney can often convince a judge to reconsider a personal bond (by gathering more information about the situation). And an attorney can usually speed up the process (and get someone out of jail) much faster than they would without an attorney.

How do they decide who gets a personal bond?

There is a lengthy and complicated calculation to determine who will qualify for a personal bond. The Judge will consider whether they live in Travis County, have a job, have any prior arrests, and whether their personal information can be verified.

What are the types of situations that would prevent a personal bond?

There are quite a few and they can be complicated. Call us and we will let you know whether to expect a personal bond or not.

Are there other ways to get out of jail?

Yes. You can hire a bail bondsman for approximately 10% of the bond amount (+ co-signers). This money is never returned. You can also pay the entire bond amount in cash. If you pay the entire bond amount to the Travis County Sheriff, it will be returned, minus a fee, when the case is over.

Should I talk to an attorney before I hire a bail bondsman?

Yes! An attorney can often convince a judge to minimize the bond conditions before release and also make the best arrangements for a future dismissal. A bail bondsman can’t negotiate with the judge.

I still have questions.

No problem. Give us a call – (512) 472-1113 – we’re happy to answer any questions. Or you can e-mail us.