A personal recognizance (PR) bond is something typically limited to low-level, first-time misdemeanor offenders. It is when a defendant is allowed to post bail on their own, without any representative or without paying any bond fee. In return for this trust, defendants must promise to appear in court on their scheduled dates.
Other types of defendants who can be deemed eligible for a personal recognizance bond in Texas are those who are seriously ill or, in some instances, those who can not afford a lawyer. But again, the nature of the crime usually precedes any of these other factors.
Some jurisdictions in Texas require defendants to file a motion in order to get a PR bond. The motion is sent to the magistrate and the defendant must then request a hearing for that motion. During that hearing, they must give evidence as to why they should be released on their own recognizance.
Advantages of Personal Recognizance Bonds
The most notable advantage is clear: a defendant gets to be released without any of the complications or the cost of standard bail. Some counties do require monthly payments to a probation officer at a rate of $30 to $50 each month as part of a pretrial release program. But even that is much more affordable than any bail that would have theoretically been imposed.
Disadvantages of Personal Recognizance Bonds
The main disadvantage of a personal recognizance bond in Texas is that a defendant is liable for the entire bond amount. Should they decide not to show up for court and the cost of the bond is $1,200, they would have to pay that amount in full.
Another disadvantage is that defendants released on their own recognizance usually have to report more often than those released on any other type of bond. It’s important that an individual understand the conditions of their release so they do not forfeit their bond.
PCS Bail Bonds has been part of the court system long enough to know that nothing should be taken for granted. Though a PR bond may sound fairly simple, there are always conditions attached that a defendant should be made aware of. The courts are taking a chance when offering this option to defendants, and so they are careful in choosing when to issue the privilege.
PCS Bail Bonds is well-versed in all kinds of bond procedures. If you have any questions concerning the process of a personal recognizance bond, don’t hesitate to contact us now.