Posting Bond and Criminal Defense


If someone you know has been arrested, they likely need help posting bond. What follows is an explanation of the bonding process and how to get that person bonded out as soon as possible.  Our criminal defense attorneys can assist you by assuring a quick and effective release from custody.

See also Bond Remedies, specifically the amount of bond you can expect.  Remember generally you pay a bonding company 10% of the actual bond amount to act as a surety.

Where are bonds posted (Harris County)?

Posting Bond occurs at the Harris County Bonding Office:

49 San Jacinto, Houston, Texas 77002

How is bond posted?

There are essentially three types of bonds and three ways of posting bond.

Cash Bond

Surety Bond

PR Bond

A cash bond is where you post the entire amount of the bond yourself. If the bond is $500, you pay $500. In this instance you are not using a bonding company. You are putting up the money guaranteeing your appearance in court.   If you fail to appear for court your money will be forfeited. If you make all your required court appearances the money will be returned to once your case is complete.This is the most common method with the least amount of upfront hassle. Here you contact and pay an approved bonding company or attorney to post the bond.   Bonding companies generally charge between 10-15% of the total bond amount. For example if your bond is $10,000, then you will pay the bonding company 10% or $1000. Unlike a cash bond, you will not get your money back once your case is disposed.

A personal recognizance bond or “PR” bond is based on a person’s promise to appear in court with no security (i.e. money) needed. PR bonds are more common in Federal Court.



How long will it take to get bonded out?

In most arrest scenarios, it can take anywhere from 6-8 hours to be processed, have bail set, and have all necessary paperwork complete.

If you have not been arrested, but there is a warrant for your arrest, you may be eligible to do what is known as a “walk through”. This process is substantially shorter, taking approximately an hour (or less).

How will I know when the person has been bonded out?

If you hired a bonding agency (remember we are licensed to post bond), they may notify you. If you did not, the person will call you. If you are in Harris County, after posting bond you will likely go to 49 San Jacinto, Houston, Texas 77002 to pick the person up.

When, where, and what time is my criminal court date?

In Harris county, and other large cities, your bonding papers will have all the information you need to know: when, where, and what time to appear for court. In smaller counties, you will be notified of your court date via mail. If you have hired a criminal defense attorney he can submit a letter of representation to the court and keep tabs on your upcoming court date.

What are bond conditions?

After posting bond conditions are issued by the court you are assigned to and vary depending on the court and severity of the offense for which you are charged. Bond conditions include such things as: not using drugs or alcohol; reporting to a pre-trial supervising officer; random urine analysis; staying out of trouble; appearing on time for court; etc. If you violate any of the bond conditions your bond may be revoked and you will find yourself once again in the custody of the sheriff’s office.

I posted a cash bond, when will I receive my money?

Typically it takes 6-8 weeks for your money to be returned and it will be returned to your last known address. Recall, a cash bond is without the assistance of a bonding agency.  These are more common on misdemeanors.

My bonding agency is requiring me to check in after court, is this normal?

Yes and no. While most bonding agencies want you to check in with them, some demand more than others. Discuss this with the bonding agency before hiring them to post bond.

I am charged with a Federal offense, is the procedure the same?

No. If you are charged with a federal crime, after an arrest, a detention hearing will be held. The judge will consider relevant factors in deciding whether or not you are eligible for release. If you are eligible for release, you are more likely to receive a “PR” bond.

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