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The conditions of release are a set of guidelines that a defendant must follow in order to remain out of jail while awaiting trial. They can also refer to standard guidelines that must be followed when a person is released on parole. The conditions of release for defendants can vary greatly. They are often based on individual circumstances and the nature of the criminal charges. These conditions can be set by a judge with input from both the defense lawyer and the prosecutor. Most people who are released from jail while awaiting trial have some common conditions that must always be followed. You should understand some basic information about conditions of release.
Why Conditions of Release Are Issued
Conditions of release are issued for several different reasons. The first is to make certain that defendants do not leave the area or miss court dates. Another reason is to protect other parties involved in the case or other parties who claim to be victims of a crime at the hands of the defendant. A very popular reason for conditions of release is to prevent the defendant from returning to criminal activities or getting into more trouble before the trial ends. Exactly what conditions are imposed on a defendant is left up to the discretion of a judge. Some people receive a long list of conditions while other people have just a few to follow.
Common Conditions of Release
Some common conditions of release include things like not leaving the country, not committing any crimes and not possessing any firearms or weapons. Paying bail is a very common condition of release. Many people charged with a crime are ordered to stay away from the victim of the crime. Defendants must usually avoid alcohol and drugs while released from jail. Some judges might impose reporting duties on the defendant. This means the defendant must report in regularly with police, the court or another official. A standard condition of release is reporting any address changes. Less common conditions like not driving or not using a computer might be imposed based on the situation and the risk the judge perceives.
Negotiating the Conditions
The conditions of release are frequently negotiated. The lawyer for the defendant can negotiate with the judge or the prosecutor in order to have some of the conditions removed or relaxed. The most common argument used to negotiate the conditions is unfair or severe hardship. Hardship means the condition is going to negatively impact the life of the defendant in some way. This could be used to relax a condition such as not being able to drive. You need the help of an experienced attorney in order to successfully negotiate the conditions of release.
What Happens When Conditions Are Violated
Violating a condition of release can lead to several problems. The judge is likely to issue a warrant for arrest. The person violating the condition can be placed into jail for the duration of the trial if the offense was serious enough. Other punitive actions could be taken. Minor or innocent violations are sometimes overlooked if the circumstances show there was no malicious intent.