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What happens if you skip bail in your criminal case? 

On Behalf of | Mar 24, 2023 | Criminal Defense

If you are formally charged with a crime, say drunk driving, the court may release you on bail. This way, you can carry on with your life while you are on trial. However, it is important to understand from the onset that bail is never an acquittal. In fact, it is far from it. 

While granting bail, the court will spell out conditions that you must meet to continue enjoying your freedom. One of these is showing up for your court dates. Failing to appear in court, also known as skipping bail, can cause problems. 

What does it mean to “jump” bail?

The principle behind bail is pretty straightforward. If the offense for which you have been charged qualifies for bail, the court will require you through your family or bail bond agency to post collateral in exchange for your release. This collateral guarantees that you will appear in court whenever you are required to do so. 

Basically, you are deemed to have jumped bail when you fail to appear for a scheduled court hearing. This is an additional criminal offense with serious consequences. Missing a court date is no small matter. Depending on the circumstances of your case, the following is likely to happen if you jump bail:

  • You will forfeit your bail bond – the first and obvious consequence of missing bail is the loss of your bail money. This means that you will owe whoever posted your bond money.
  • You will go back to jail – jumping bail also makes you a flight risk. And this means the court will issue an arrest warrant against you. In other words, you might end up spending the rest of your trial period behind bars.

Defending yourself

Jumping bail can attract additional charges. Learning how Nevada criminal law works can help you effectively safeguard your rights if you are charged with jumping bail.