Author Archives: Author

What Does PR Bond Mean?

A Person in Jail.

What does PR bond mean?

When you’re arrested and charged with a crime in Texas, the judge might release you from jail on a personal recognizance or PR bond. This means you aren’t going to have to put up any collateral or pay any deposit on bail because no bail amount is set. Instead, the judge has decided you’re trustworthy enough to release and believes you will return for your court date with no risk of flight.

In Travis County, Pretrial Services issues these types of bonds and the judge checks your references and approves the bond for your release. Other types of bail bonds that can be issued include:

  • Property bonds
  • Surety bonds
  • Attorney bonds

If you aren’t released on a PR bond and need bail bonds in Austin, TX, you can get reliable help from ATX Bail Bonds by calling 512.834.2245.

How does a PR bond work?

As with other bonds, when you’re issued a PR bond you are still required to appear at your appointed court date. These bonds are typically issued to first-time non-violent offenders with an otherwise good reputation in their community. With recognizance bonds, judges typically review evidence such as personal references before approving the bond. These types of bonds are rare.

How long does a PR bond take?

The time it takes to get a PR bond issued usually varies depending on the county in which you’re incarcerated. Travis County tends to expedite the process faster than most counties and through Pretrial Services working the case, it’ll take about 24 to 36 hours to get released. If you have an attorney handle the case, it can take as little as two hours.

Can you travel on a PR bond?

As with other bonds, a PR bond might come with certain restrictions, including travel restrictions. Much of this will depend on the circumstances of the case. Usually, no matter where you intend to go, if you’re traveling outside of your community or county, you will probably have to get permission from a court officer to do so. In-state travel is often permitted and you might have just a few restrictions. With out-of-state travel, you’ll likely have more restrictions and might only be allowed to travel in certain circumstances—a family emergency, a funeral, etc. International travel is usually not allowed.

Can a PR bond be revoked?

All bail bonds, including recognizance bonds, will have conditions set down by the court that you must follow. Conditions could include anything from maintaining employment to taking regular drug tests. What happens if you violate a PR bond? If you violate any of the conditions on a bond, you risk having the bond revoked. This means you might end up going back to jail until your trial. A judge might overlook a minor infraction, but something major like failing a drug test will likely result in the bond being revoked and you returning to jail until your court hearing.

What is PR bond supervised release?

If you see the word “supervised” on your release form when you receive a PR bond, as with all bail bonds, it means that once you sign, you agree to all conditions set forth by the court for your release. If you violate any of those conditions you risk having your bond revoked and returning to jail.

“Supervised release,” however, is not a term typically associated with a PR bond. Instead, it is a term used in the federal court system for a preliminary time of freedom from federal prison. This is also known as special or mandatory parole and the convict is supervised by a probation officer. The convict must follow all conditions of the release or risk going back to prison to serve out the terms set down in the release.

A PR Bond Hearing

How to get PR bond

Who qualifies for a PR bond in Austin, TX? Technically, anybody could qualify for a personal recognizance bond. But, these bonds are very rare. To get one, often you usually need to have an attorney who will request one or request a bond hearing to determine if you should be released on personal bond.

At a hearing, evidence of your character is gathered and presented to the court. Personal and work references will be consulted. In particular the court needs to know that you’re not a danger to the community and that you are not a flight risk. Defendants with a solid work record, no prior criminal record, and with an upstanding reputation within their community stand a better chance of getting a personal bond.

Another way a defendant can qualify for personal bond is to be incarcerated for 90 days without being indicted. If the offense is a misdemeanor, the time is 30 days. This is known as a release because of delay.

If you don’t quality for a PR bond and bail has been set, call ATX Bail Bonds at 512.834.2245 for superior bail bonds services. We’ll get you released as quickly as possible.

What Do You Do If Someone Steals Your Identity?

A Man Discovers He's a Victim of Identity Theft.

What do you do if someone steals your identity?

While movies might make identity theft seem funny, the real thing is far from it. If someone has opened an account in your name, or has filed taxes in your name, or even tried to make a medical claim in your name, you’re a victim of identity theft. If you think you might be a victim of identity theft, you want to act quickly to minimize the damage done by the thief. Acting quickly means taking these steps:

  • Report the theft and make a claim on your identity theft insurance, if available.
  • Alert any company where fraudulent accounts have been used about the theft.
  • Report the theft to the Federal Trade Commission because this information is used by law enforcement to catch thieves. The FTC will also provide you with a recovery plan with forms that help you file reports and dispute charges.
  • File a report with your local police. This builds a paper trail and helps law enforcement agencies track down the perpetrators.
  • Alert credit reporting agencies by placing a fraud alert on your credit report and review them for fraudulent accounts.
  • Start credit freeze to prevent access to your credit reports.
  • Have a credit monitoring service check your credit reports for suspicious activity.
  • Shore up security on accounts by changing passwords. Also shred documents with any identifying information.
  • Scan your accounts and statements for unauthorized charges.

Is identity theft a felony?

In Texas, identity theft is a felony. This means, under Texas law, you can’t transfer, obtain, use, or possess another person’s identity and intentionally defraud or harm them. Depending on how many items are found in your possession, the level of the felony charge will vary. With less than five items you’ll be charged with a state jail felony, while more than 50 items will bump those charges up to a first-degree felony. If you’ve been jailed on identity theft or any other kind of theft charges in Austin, TX and need to be bonded out, get reliable help from ATX Bail Bonds. We can be reached 24/7 at 512.834.2245.

What are the four types of identity theft?

Identity theft is usually classified into four types:

  • Medical: Someone uses another person’s identity to get medical care.
  • Criminal: Someone falsely identifies themselves to evade an arrest, conviction, or warrant under their real name.
  • Financial: Some uses another person’s identifying information or bank or credit card account information to make purchases or other fraudulent transactions.
  • Child: Someone uses a child’s identity for fraudulent purposes including getting employment or a residence.

What is the most common form of identity theft?

Of all the different types of identity theft, the most common is financial. Billions of dollars are lost annually to thieves who have stolen others identifying information to gain access to credit card, bank, and other financial accounts. Thieves get into these accounts to make purchases, take money, or they use information like stolen Social Security numbers to open accounts in another person’s name.

What are the first signs of identity theft?

Several warning signs are common for those who have fallen victim to identity thieves. One of the most common signs of identity theft is withdrawals from your bank that you didn’t make or authorize. Purchases on credit cards are often common as well.

Other things to look out for include:

  • Having checks or credit cards declined
  • Getting calls from debt collectors on debts you don’t owe
  • Strange accounts or charges on your credit report
  • Tax filings in your name from companies you don’t work for
  • Denial of claims on health insurance or claims filed on health insurance for conditions you don’t have
  • Notices of compromised data and information on your accounts or at companies with whom you’ve done business

How can I find out if someone is using my identity?

One common form of identity that is stolen is your Social Security number. This number can be used in various fraudulent activities from opening credit card accounts to falsely filing taxes. You can get a statement from the Social Security Administration that will show you the activity in which your number was used for criminal purposes. You can also keep track of bank statements, credit card statements, and credit reports to look for discrepancies.

Who to report identity theft to

If you suspect identity theft there are multiple agencies and organizations you can report it to. One of the first you should report it to is the Federal Trade Commission. They can provide you with information on recovering your information and they track reports and provide information to law enforcement to track down identity thieves. You will also want to report the theft to local police, even if the thief is in another country. This report can help authorities track thieves. Also, report suspected fraud to credit reporting agencies as well as to banks and credit card companies. If you’ve been a victim of medical fraud you can report the theft to Medicare’s fraud office or to your insurer.

Identity theft and social media

While social media can be fun and useful, it’s also a target for criminals. In some cases, criminals steal photos or other information to make fake profiles. You should always avoid giving out any information like phone numbers or email addresses on social media. No matter what you post, you have to be careful about the information you share.

A Person in Jail

Can identity theft be expunged?

If you have been convicted of identity theft in Texas it’s very difficult to get your record expunged because it’s a felony conviction. Usually any felony conviction can’t be expunged unless you are later found innocent or the charges were dismissed.

You can, however, get your record expunged if you were a victim of identity theft and your information was used to commit a crime. The person arrested has to have provided false information at the time of their arrest and the false information appeared on the criminal record because of that arrest and for no other reason.

If you have been arrested for identity theft in Austin, TX and need bail bonds help, you can always rely on the team at ATX Bail Bonds. Call us 24/7 at 512.834.2245 for assistance.

What Makes an Assault Charge Aggravated?

A Man Assaults Another Man.

What makes an assault charge aggravated?

Anytime you threaten to harm someone, you’ve committed a simple assault. But, if you make a serious attempt to cause serious bodily harm to someone with no regard for their life, you’ve committed an aggravated assault. Often aggravated assaults involve weapons, although the weapon doesn’t have to be present or used for the assault to be considered. Weapons don’t necessarily have to be involved at all, only the threat of serious injury need be involved. In most states, a simple assault is elevated to aggravated if an attack or threat of an attack is made against a public servant such as a police officer or firefighter. A person’s mental state can also elevate charges. If a perpetrator intentionally acts to harm someone, the charges are also elevated.

If you’ve been charged with any type of violent crime in Austin, TX and need help with bail, get help from the experts at ATX Bail Bonds. We offer a full range of bail services and other assistance. Call us today at 512.834.2245 when you need immediate help.

Is aggravated assault a felony?

Under the Texas Penal Code, aggravated assault is considered a felony. Normally, it is considered a second-degree felony, but it can be elevated to a first-degree felony if both a weapon was involved and serious bodily injury was caused. In Texas, serious bodily injury is considered any injury that could lead to death or permanent disfigurement. 

What is the difference between aggravated assault and battery?

Because the terms are often used interchangeably, people often confuse such offenses as assault, aggravated assault, and battery. With a simple assault, just the threat of intentional violence can lead to the charge, whereas with an aggravated assault, the perpetrator intentionally injures someone and the injury could lead to death or disfigurement. Sometimes a weapon is involved and the charge becomes an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, even if the weapon was never used in the attack. Battery occurs when any assault causes harm to a person. You can be charged with assault and battery, for instance, if you threaten to punch someone and then follow through with the threat by actually punching that person. If you keep hitting the person with the intent to hurt them and their injuries could disfigure them or cause them to die, then the charge gets elevated to aggravated assault.  

Aggravated assault for a minor

When a minor intentionally seriously harms someone, it’s very likely a judge will consider the offense serious enough that the juvenile will be tried as an adult. This also means a minor could face sentencing as an adult as well if convicted.

Aggravated assault to a police officer

Under Texas law, you commit an aggravated assault if you threaten or attack a police officer or other public servant such as a firefighter or paramedic when that person is acting in their role as a public servant. No harm has to be done or no weapon has to be used for the assault to be elevated to the felony charge. Commissioned security officers are also considered in this case as well. In certain cases, non-commissioned security officers also qualify. 

What can be considered a deadly weapon?

While many people often think of firearms when they think of deadly weapons, in the case of an aggravated assault, several objects, including, but not limited to, those listed below;

  • Knives, including switchblades, daggers, stilettos, and swords
  • Blackjacks
  • Brass knuckles
  • Nunchaku or fighting sticks
  • Shuriken or throwing stars
  • Large rocks
  • Clubs or baseball bats

Depending on which state you’re charged in, almost any type of object that is used in an attack to cause serious injury or even kill might be considered a deadly weapon. The amount of force and type of injury caused is considered. A recent case in Texas, for instance, ruled that a floor could be considered a deadly weapon because a defendant slammed the victim’s head against it. 

Is a Taser considered a deadly weapon?

Tasers and other devices that are considered non-lethal or less-lethal can be considered deadly weapons in Texas. This will depend on how the Taser was used. Although Tasers and stun guns are generally used to subdue or stun people, they can under certain circumstances seriously injure or even kill a person. The intent of the attack and the seriousness of the injury will always be taken into consideration.

Is it illegal for a felon to carry a Taser?

Laws vary from state to state about carrying stun guns, Tasers, and other less-lethal weapons. In many states, a convicted felon cannot carry or possess weapons of any sort, including Tasers. No restrictions like this exist, however, under Texas law. If you are a convicted felon, you may want to check with local authorities in your state about what you can carry or possess when it comes to non-lethal weapons.

A Person in Jail.

Can aggravated assault with a deadly weapon be expunged in Texas?

If you’ve been convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in Texas, that assault charge will remain on your record. No assault charges, according to legal experts, can be expunged from court records in Texas unless the person is found not guilty or the case is dismissed. If you are found not guilty your arrest record and charge record can be immediately removed.

While your record cannot be expunged, if you received deferred adjudication on the charge, you can request the record be sealed. When a record is sealed, there is limited access, and the charge will not appear on a background check.

If you’ve been arrested for aggravated assault in Austin, TX and want to get released quickly on bail, let the team at ATX Bail Bonds help you. When you call 512.834.2245 we’ll get to work immediately so you can get released quickly.

How to Verify an Expert Bail Bondsman

gavel book and bail money

How does a bail bondsman work?

To know how to choose an expert bail bondsman, let’s define what is a bail bondsman first. The state licenses a general bail bondsman they operate within to provide bail bonds for anyone that is accused or has been arrested for a crime. That crime can be anywhere between a traffic ticket to murder, robbery, and more. A bail bond is assuring the courts that the accused will appear in court as ordered. 

A bail bondsman is putting up the money to the courts that guarantee the accused is returning. The bail bondsman will require a percentage of the bail amount from the accused. That amount is dictated by state laws. A bail bondsman is a financial professional that furnish bonds or loans. This process requires the bail bondsman to ascertain and determine if a potential client is bondable. 

The most common way an accused can prove they are bondable is to put up money toward the bond, the percentage mentioned earlier, or some type of security. That security can be real estate or any valuable property like jewelry, vehicle, etc. Another option is to have a co-signer on the bond that guarantees the accused will arrive in court as ordered. 

What is a bail bondsmans job?

A bail bondsman works either independently or is a employee of a bond agency. The role of a bail bondsman is to finalize the paperwork necessary to complete bonding for the accused, receive payments from that person, and track that person down if they fail to appear in court.

What does a bailbondsman do?

  • Assessment: Normally, the bond process starts with bail bondsman assessment of the defendant or their representative. They investigate the background to determine if the defendant will appear for the court date, or they are a flight risk. The bail bondsman also assesses the defendant’s ability to pay their bond fee and what financial recourse they have if they fail to make their court appearance.  
  • Paperwork: Once the assessment is complete and the bail bondsman determines the defendant is good to show up in court, they collect the bail fee from them and complete paperwork, which is filed with the court. It is this formal execution of the bond that gets the defendant released from jail. 
  • Communication: Some bail bondsmen will spend time prospecting new “business,” much like a salesperson.  They have a meeting with current clients and paperwork to maintain.  For a bail bondsman, time is of the essence because when they get that phone call, it is a defendant needing bail release as soon as the judge has set bail. 
  • Apprehension: One duty of a bail bondsman is apprehending clients that did not make their required court appearance that the bond ensured the courts they would. The bail bondsman will track the client down, apprehend them, and bring them to the jail or before the court. 

Do you still have to pay the bail bondsman if charges are dropped?

When you’ve been arrested and bail set, then you use a bail bondsman to post that bail for you, the fee you pay for that bond is non-refundable, and you may still be in debt to pay the remainder. For example, if the charges are dismissed, dropped, or reduced, any amount paid by you or for you is non-refundable. If there were a payment arrangement made between you and the bail bondsman, you’d still owe that money. 

Why? Because the bail bondsman performed a service for you, and that fee you paid or agreed to pay was for that service. The service was to get you out of jail, and they did. The only exception to this is if the bond wasn’t posted before the charges were dismissed or dropped. 

Can anyone be a bail bondsman?

Each state has a different requirement to become a bail bondsman, and within each state, the prerequisites could vary between cities and counties.  In Texas, the qualifications and licensing requirements to become a bail bondsmen are

  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Must reside in the state of Texas
  • Must be 18 years old or older
  • Must have a clean criminal background
surety bond documents

What is an expert bail bondsman?

An expert bail bondsman is a person that pays bail for at least five criminal cases in twelve months. An expert bail bondsmen will be currently licensed by the state’s DPS (Department of Public Safety) and able to execute or countersign a bail bond for criminal cases.

When you need to post a bond for yourself or somebody else, it is usually a rush job, and anyone in that position is deciding in a hurry.  While all bail bondsman have the goal to get a person out of jail on bail, not all of them operate in the same way. 

You need to check several out before you sign on to work with them and verify expert bail bondsman that can get you the right bond for the case at hand.  Some pointers on looking for a bail bondsman: 

  1. Give them the total amount of bail needed: The judge decides the bail amount, and the defendant or the jail should be able to give you this information. 
  2. Ask for recommendations or suggestions: Detention officers are located in the court and usually have worked with several bail bondsmen. However, this is sometimes like getting your family doctor to recommend a cardiologist – many are not comfortable making recommendations. 
  3. Hire a lawyer: Criminal lawyers work with bail bondsmen daily and will often have one they work with the most. 
  4. Ask about the required fee: A bail bondsman will charge you a percentage of the bail as a fee to start the bond process. The average is 10%, some are as much as 20%. 
  5. Avoid bail bondsmen with cheap rates: Any bail bondsman that offers a lower rate than others, they are probably a newbie in the industry and won’t have the experience of the bond process.  

When you need expert bail bondsmen for your case, know who to call. ATX Bail Bonds is always here for you. Dial 512.834.2245 today!

What Does it Mean to Have an Active Warrant?

arrested man

Help With an Active Warrant Search

Before we answer that question about an active warrant search, let’s discuss, “What is a warrant?”, and the answers is, there are two different types of warrants in the law environment.

An arrest warrant which gives law enforcement the authorization to detain a person and hold them in custody.

A search warrant gives law enforcement the authority to conduct a search for evidence believed to be linked to a crime.

Essentially, a warrant gives law enforcement, through a judge, to engage in what would be an un-Constitutional activity. A warranty isn’t required for law enforcement to place a person under arrest for any wrongdoing.

So, what does active warrant mean? This means that any of the above warrants has been issued for your arrest or search your property and the action has not taken place. Until the arrest or search has been completed, it remains an active arrest warranty or an active warrant search. For more help with an active warrant search in Austin, TX, connect with ATX Bail Bonds at 512.834.2245.

What does it mean to have an active warrant?

There has been an arrest warrant or a search warrant that has not been completed and closed is considered an active warrant. Search is possible to see if there is an active warrant in your name, which we will address further into this article.

How are you notified of a warrant?

Every state has their own procedures and protocol. In Texas,a defendant shall be served a summons by delivery person-to-person, they may leave the summons at their place of residence, or with another person who knows the defendant and is of legal age and discretion living in the residence. It may also be mailed to the last address on record for the defendant.

If the active warrant search finds a place of residence and the warrant is for a felony charge, law officials have authority to kick down the door if there is no answer or occupants decline to answer the knock. Law officials are not required to have a copy of the warrant on their person when serving the summons.

gavel and handcuffs

How do I find out if I have active warrants?

A person doesn’t have to commit a horrific crime to draw the court’s attention. An arrest warrant can be for something like unpaid parking or speeding tickets, or a missed court appearance, and you may not even know there is an arrest warrant in your name. If you are concerned about an active warrant, search for one in any of the following methods:  

Look on local county websites under courts or sheriff’s department. The smaller the county, the longer it may take for those records to be updated. We recommend it to check frequently until you have found the warrant.  Warrants for violent charges are not always posted.

For a federal active warrant search, contact the federal court in the district the crime occurred.

Bail bondsman often have access to the county database where active warrant search can be productive.

Hire a criminal attorney. They have access to several databases that the public doesn’t. You’ll be required to hire the attorney to represent you, but you’ll have an answer to your active warrant search.

There are third-party websites that offer active warrant searches for a fee. This usually requires a credit card to be kept on file.

Another option to resolve our active warrant search is to call or go in person to a local police station, or have another person make the call for you. There is always the risk of being arrested while at the police station performing your active warrant search.

Is a warrant a public record?

Yes, any active warrant search is open to the public in Texas Criminal records in Texas are generated and distributed by the law enforcement agencies in different jurisdictions unless they are marked confidential. There is a Criminal Records Service operated by the Texas Department of Public Safety that serves as the central repository for the state.

How can I check if I have a warrant in Texas Online?

Persons with an active warrant search will find details of arrests, convictions, dispositions, probations, prosecutions, and adjudications through the TDPS online database. However, unlike most criminal record sources that use separate non-standardized digitization processes and protocols, the information may vary between the different jurisdictions and subjects.

cop car coming to arrest someone

Closing Words

If you’ve been curious on how to find an active warrant, this article has provided several options. Hiring a criminal attorney is the best source, because if you have an active warrant out with your name, you will probably need the services of an attorney. Having one from the very beginning of your active warrant search is always excellent advice. For more help with an active warrant search in Austin, TX, give our team a call at 512.834.2245.

What is Domestic Violence?

End of Violence Against Women, Stop violence against Women, Sexual harassment ,International women's day

Get Help With Domestic Violence

Domestic violence come in many forms and can be a heavy weight for all of those involved. When it comes to domestic violence there are certain repercussions that will be given from each state when someone has been reported or arrested. Along with legal consequences, t’s important also to be aware of the different types of domestic violence that are prevalent and how it can affect people involved in the long run. Domestic violence will weigh heavily on the minds of the convicted as well as with family members and should be treated with appropriate seriousness. If you know of someone that is undergoing domestic violence get in touch with legal representation or counseling. Here is some general information regarding domestic violence that may prove enlightening to you.

What is the Domestic Violence Act?

The Domestic Violence Act states that domestic violence involves the act of any violence even if only verbally perpetrated by a household member to another household member and includes any omission that will cause moral or physical harm to another.

Who is affected by domestic abuse?

Domestic violence or abuse can be carried out in many forms from men against women, women against men, and in same-sex relations. The abuse can be given to the elderly, the young, or with common age.

How common is domestic violence in the US?

Domestic violence in the US according to figures from the Office for National Statistics in 2016 showed that one in ten recorded crimes was a result of domestic abuse.

What are the 3 stages in the cycle of violence?

Three stages of domestic violence can include the Tension-Building Phase, the Acute or Crisis Phase, and the Calm or Honeymoon Phase. It’s important to get familiar with the frequency and severity of abuse as it will tend to increase over time without proper intervention. Even over a period of time after intervention or without intervention there can still be changes made to the cycle of abuse. It’s important to consider your options be they with private intervention, family counseling, or any other method that will safely implement changes.

What are the signs and symptoms of abuse?

Domestic violence may show up in the behavior of those who are abused with changes in behavior such as hyperactivity, aggression, anger, and changes in work or school performance. Depression, anxiety, sudden loss of self-confidence, and unusual fears may develop. Usual activities or connections with friends may be something that those who are abused withdraw from as well.

Alcoholic in a family. Brutal bearded sad man sitting in front of the vodka bottle and thinking about his problems while drinking at home

What are warning signs of violence?

  • frequent physical fighting
  • loss of temper on a daily basis
  • significant vandalism or property damage
  • detailed plans to commit acts of violence
  • increase in risk-taking behavior
  • increase in use of drugs or alcohol
  • carrying a weapon
  • announcing threats or plans for hurting others
  • enjoying hurting animals

What happens to first time domestic violence offenders?

Domestic violence for a first-time charge will have varying consequences depending on the court and county your case resides in. There is a possibility that you may be placed on probation, attend and complete anger management classes, or in some cases, jail time can be imposed. 

What is the statute of limitations on domestic violence in Texas?

In Texas, the statute of limitations with domestic violence will depend on the severity of the crime. With domestic assault being a misdemeanor the statute of limitations will be two years. With a charge of continuous violence against a family being a felony the statute of limitations would be three years. 

How long does domestic violence stay on your record in Texas?

Crimes with domestic violence in Texas will stay in the public record with note of you being arrested and charged unless action is taken. This will involve a long process of expungement or removal.

Can you get a domestic violence charge expunged in Texas?

When domestic violence is connected to a family violence offense in the state of Texas than the convicted is not eligible for expungement. The only way to get a domestic violence case expunged is if you’re not found guilty of the alleged crime or if the case gets dismissed.

Seek Assistance Concerning Domestic Violence 

Domestic violence is a serious crime and there are repercussions if you’ve been arrested. If you find yourself or someone you know who needs help with legal procedures or domestic violence bail after an arrest make sure to get in touch with a lawyer or bail bondsman for assistance. Don’t let domestic violence continue and impact your life or those of someone you know. Seek measures of assistance and make a change for the better. There are multiple avenues to take that can have these types of cases handled in a safe and smart way. Don’t let the cycle continue and seek the avenues available to you for help.

If you need help with domestic violence bail in Austin, TX call 512.834.2245 with ATX Bail Bonds!

Can You Post Bail for a DUI?

DWI bail bonds

Can You Post Bail for a DUI?

DWI Bail bonds serve an important service for defendants who have been arrested on a DWI charge. But the question remains: can you post bail for a DUI? The answer is clear: under most if not all circumstances, yes. If you have been arrested for a first-time DUI, then the officer does not have to book a person into jail. As a matter of fact, if a defendant is acting in accordance with the law and is behaving themselves, they could even be released after the DUI is processed. The protocol is routine and the same, but there are independent factors that can influence the procedures in the interest of the defendant.


How Much is Bail Bond for DUI?

As previously alluded to, the bail bond for a DUI will be remarkably dependent upon the actions of the defendant. If the defendant has a storied, long criminal past, then the bail will be set higher than, for instance, an individual who is being arrested for their first DUI. A misdemeanor DUI bond can be anywhere from $500 to $10,000. A felony DUI bond amount can be as much as $50,000 depending on the individual’s previous criminal history.

Do You Have to Spend the Night in Jail for a DUI?

In the circumstance where a defendant has been arrested for a DUI, they will usually be taken to jail. It is also true that usually, the appellant will remain in jail for the evening and then be released in the morning. When that occurs, it is important to follow through with all court-mandated appointments and procedures. Following the rule of law is necessary for all citizens of the United States of America.

How Do Police Prove Driving?

Would you like to learn more about how the police prove that people are driving under the influence? There are three main ways that police prove when individuals are under the influence. Please review the following bullet points to learn more:

  • General observation. If a person is observed to be exhibiting the symptoms of possible driver impairment, they could be pulled over. Such symptoms include the motorist swerving or driving unusually slow. 
  • Field sobriety tests. At a DUI stop, the officer may ask the driver to participate in some field sobriety tests. There are many field sobriety tests. The most common ones are the walk-and-turn and the one-leg stand.
  • Chemical testing or a breathalyzer test. On the roadside, an officer may ask a driver to take a breathalyzer test. Usually, a pre-arrest breath test is optional, which means the driver can refuse to take one. 

Can I Avoid Jail Time for 2nd DUI?

If you are wondering whether or not you can avoid jail time for the second DUI, it is important to consider all the ramifications of drinking and driving in the first place. If an individual is arrested for a DWI a second time, the legal system ramps up the punishment correspondingly. The offense is a Class A misdemeanor, which is more serious than the first conviction. Fines for a second DWI can be as much as $4,000 and individuals can face jail time that could range anywhere from between one month to a full year. The severity of the punishment will wholly depend upon the actions of the defendant. Did they behave? What is their previous criminal history? All of these factors matter in the court because a person who is a threat to civil society is considered dangerous. 

DUI Bail Bonds

What are DUI bail bonds? To start out with, a DUI bail bond is cash that an arrested DUI suspect sends to the court in exchange for their release from jail. Having paid bail money will help ensure that the defendants appear in court for their upcoming arraignment. If for some reason the defendant does not show up for their mandatory court proceeding, then the court may keep all the money that was sent on behalf of the defendant.

Can You Get a DUI If You Weren’t Driving?

Are you wondering whether you can be charged with a DUI if you weren’t driving? The answer may surprise you. The answer is yes, you can be charged with a DUI-related charge even if there is no proof of driving. This extends to sleeping in your car if you are inebriated. If a person is intoxicated in a parked car, they can still be arrested for a DWI.

Can You Get a DUI for Sitting in the Passenger Seat?

Under the current laws in Texas, a person must have control of the vehicle in order to be charged with a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) offense. The police in Texas can arrest you for suspicion of DWI if you are sitting in your car with the keys in a public place even if you are in the passenger seat.

DWI bail bonds

Do Passengers Have to Take a Breathalyzer?

Passengers who are not driving are not typically required to perform a breath test. If they do, and they have not been arrested for a DUI, the word of the law is on their side to refuse to take a breathalyzer test.

Would you like more information about DWI bail bonds? Our staff at ATX Bail Bonds are ready to take your phone call at __PHONE__. Receive appropriate assistance with DWI bail bonds in Austin, TX!

How are drugs classified?

An assortment of drugs

What is meant by controlled drugs?

There are three categories of drugs: over the counter, prescription required, and illegal drugs, which are referred to as controlled drugs. It is the illegal drugs that drug charges can result. Meaning, if you’re arrested for possession of controlled substance drugs, you are facing drug charges.    

A controlled substance is commonly a chemical or drug whose manufacturing of possession of, or use of is government regulated, which a person can face drug charges if any of these scenarios apply to them. This includes drugs that are illicitly used that are intended to be prescription medications.  There are some prescription medications that are not included in this group, like antibiotics.

What are the 5 types of controlled substances?

This category was determined after careful consideration by legal and medical industries and other sources. The purpose of control of drugs is a method of protecting the public from harm that can come for exposure and use of certain drugs. This gives us the CSA (Controlled Substance Act), a federal law that determines what is subject to drug charges for illegal manufacturing, possession, or use.

Controlled drugs are substances that are controlled under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). All drug substances are categorized by the federal government to regulate them according to a predetermined “schedule,” based on the level of danger they are to the public. The manufacturing, possession, or use of these five drugs subject the person or persons to drug charges if determined by law enforcement. The five “schedules, which are:

  • Anabolic Steroids
  • Depressants
  • Hallucinogens
  • Narcotics
  • Stimulants 

What is Schedule 1 controlled substance?

Schedule I controlled substance that can result in drug charges include chemicals, drugs, or other substances are drugs that do not have any medical use by the American Medical Association or other authoritative figure that has knowledge of drugs and has the possibility of being abused for the end results of taking the drug, aka, “getting high”, creating a severe physical and/or psychological dependence.

How many Schedule 1 drugs are there?

The federal law determines that Schedule 1 drugs are those that are not readily available for clinical doctor prescribed use. These are drugs that have not been researched, studied, tested, and approved by the Food and Drug Administration, aka FDA, for public use by prescription. Examples of Schedule I drug that would result in drug charges for manufacturing, possession, or use of would be:

  • Heroin
  • LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide)
  • Marijuana (cannabis),
  • Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy)
  • Methaqualone
  • Peyote

What kind of drug is alcohol?

Alcohol initially provides a stimulating feeling initially, thus its popularity in a social setting. This results from it boosting dopamine, the brain’s chemical messenger that gives us a euphoric feeling.

They classify alcohol as a depressant, affecting the central nervous system. It is considered a psychoactive substance that excessive consumption can inhibit activity in the central nervous system, resulting in impaired coordination, delayed reaction, and slurred speech.

It has been determined through research and studies that alcohol impacts the brain and distorts a person’s ability to make a correct judgment and sound reasoning. After a person has consumed a few drinks, it is common they will begin to experience the depressant effects, which can be more potent for some than others. The depressant effects can spiral downward rapidly, become out of control and cause any or all of the following reactions:

  • Memory loss
  • Inability to talk or walk
  • Pain Desensitization

It is those reactions that can lead to the potential cause of accidents that may result in serious injury, even death, which would lead to a DUI or DWI, which could be considered drug charges. 

Are drug charges a felony?

Felony drug charges under state and federal criminal laws, usually result in a one-year prison term and other criminal fines, whereas misdemeanor drug charges will result in a sentence in jail time, not prison, and other criminal fines that are as extensive as with federal drug charges. What determines the difference in the level and severity of drug charges are the following factors:

  • Drug charges by the amount
  • The drug types
  • Being sold or trafficking

It is usually considered the act of distributing to be felony drug charges by most state laws due to the potential harm it causes more people. In some situations, it is considered that a certain amount of possession to be possession with intent to sell. 

collected drugs and cuffs for drug charges

Can drug charges be expunged?

Each state will have its own determining factors for this, but in Texas, there are some circumstances where the drug charges can be expunged from a person’s record. Those circumstances would be if a conviction for the drug charges did not happen, or there was not a formal prosecution. An expunged drug charge means it removes the information from a person’s records. One way this could happen would be the defendants’ legal team proved if the drug charges without evidence.

If a person faces drug charges of any type, misdemeanor or federal should contact a defense attorney with experience in drug charges. The attorney can post bond, if a judge sets a bond, and guide the accused through the legal process. With their experience and knowledge of the law, they can get the charges dropped or reduced, and the penalty set to the best interest of their client.

Call 512.834.2245 today for drug charge bail in Austin, TX from ATX Bail Bonds.

Should You Accept or Deny a Breathalyzer Test?

DWI bail bonds

What To Do With a DWI

In Texas, drunk driving or driving while intoxicated is not just discouraged, but something we are actively seeking to end. Our state does not view intoxicated driving lightly and neither should you. First offenses can cost you upwards of $500 as well as three days or more in jail. If you are caught during a major holiday, refusals to accept sobriety tests are automatically charged as DWI’s. This is a charge that will stick with you for the rest of your life. So when you need help with DWI bail bonds in Austin, TX, connect with ATX Bail Bonds. We’re available whenever you need us at 512.834.2245.

DWI bail bonds arrest

What is a DWI

A DWI means that someone was driving while intoxicated. More often than not, that is in reference to their blood alcohol content, but it could also be due to drugs or other controlled substances. Regardless of what it is, if you are arrested and charged with a DWI, you are dealing with some serious consequences. A DWI be a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the situation. The one constant with any arrest is a sobriety test. For DWI bail bonds a breathalyzer is not required, but it will likely be administered at the request of the arresting officer. This is a situation that many vehicle owners are unsure about. While it may feel right to deny a breathalyzer test, there can be serious consequences to doing that. 

Reasons to Accept a Breathalyzer with a DWI

Why should you accept a sobriety test? If you are sober, then doing so will help your situation. Refusing the test can imply guilt, resulting in your arrest and need for help with DWI bail bonds. There are a number of other reasons along with that as to why you should accept a sobriety test.

  • Implied Consent: Being a license holder, there is a certain amount of implied consent that you are agreeing to. Basically, since you have a license, you are agreeing to a breathalyzer or blood test when asked. Obviously, you have the right to decline, but that can sometimes lead to more problems. 
  • “No Refusal”: During certain times of the year, such as during a major holiday, many counties adopt a no refusal stance. This means, regardless of what you want, you cannot refuse a sobriety test if a police officer suspects you to be driving while intoxicated.
  • Immediate License Suspension: If you do refuse a breathalyzer or blood test, you may be automatically arrested. More than that, your license will be immediately suspended. Until you can post bail and make your case in court, you will not be able to legally drive a car. 
  • Fines and Fees: While you may think you can live without a license, but in many states, there has been a crack down on drunk or intoxicated driving. This means that the fines, fees, and bail amounts have increased significantly. 

DWI bail bonds costs vary from the amount of an asphalt patching service to astronomical prices. No matter what, you can rely on ATX Bail Bonds for help. We can help with bail bonds for DWI situations and more. We understand this is a tough situation to be in. We will never judge you or a loved one. Instead, we will be here to help when you need it most. Give us a call today to learn more. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much is bail for DWI?
    • The final bail amount is dependent on several factors. Is this your first offense? How much of a threat are you? These kinds of questions and variables determine the bail amount which can vary from $500 to $10,000.
  • Is DUI same as DWI?
    • Many think the two are interchangeable, but they can mean different things in different states. In some states, DWI stands for driving while intoxicated, which can refer to any controlled substance or drink. Whereas, DUI can stand for driving under the influence of alcohol. It’s important to understand what each means in each state. 
  • How bad is DWI?
    • No matter what, a DWI or a DUI is a serious offense. They are classified as misdemeanors. Those can feel not as bad but make no mistake. A misdemeanor charge and conviction will stay on your permanent record and affect your future.
  • Is DUI a felony in Texas?
    • No, generally speaking, a DWI charge is a classified misdemeanor. That in mind, if this is a repeated offense, you were driving while intoxicated with a minor in the vehicle, or other reasons, your charge can be increased to a felony. 
  • What are the consequences of a DWI?
    • Regardless if this is your first or offense or not, the consequences are serious. Your license can be suspended, you may be required to attend defensive driving classes, you could be placed on probation. If you have proven to be a serious threat, you may be required to install a breathalyzer that you have to breath in before starting the vehicle.
judge deciding on DWI bail bonds

Connect With Us Today for More Information

For more information and help with DWI bail bonds in Austin, TX, look no further than ATX Bail Bonds. We’re here to help you when you may need it most. Call us at 512.834.2245 to get started. 

Holiday theft safety tips

package on stoop

Protecting your packages

‘Tis the season to be jolly.  Or is it? Maybe you’re one of those people that buys gifts all year long, putting them away until December. Or maybe you’re one of those people that doesn’t or can’t get out there till December 24th to do your holiday shopping. Either way, we have found some holiday theft prevention tips that can keep your holiday ruined by theft.

Theft on holiday isn’t anything new and this is the biggest holiday theft season, and it isn’t limited to stealing packages from your car or home either. Identity theft holiday season isn’t just during the holidays, that season is all year long. Within the following piece, you will find some holiday theft prevention tips to help you keep from being a victim.

What is the difference between stealing and theft? 

In common custom, there isn’t any real difference between stealing and theft. Either way, the meaning and results are the same: “misappropriation of goods.” It is legislation that defines the difference with many jurisdictions choose “theft” grouping all crimes against property such as burglary, embezzlement, fraud, larceny, looting, robbery, shoplifting, into one classification. 

Stealing largely refers to taking something specific. For example, we look at “stealing” associated with something that has been taken, as in, “The thieves stole her diamond ring”.

What is considered theft?

Theft is legally defined as the unauthorized taking of property from another person with the intention to permanently and deprive the victim of having it. There are 2 key elements within that definition:

  • The taking of property belong to another person
  • The intention of depriving the victim of having the property permanently

The taking component in a theft normally requires confiscating the property that belongs to somebody else. It may also involve removing the property. However, it is the component of intention is where it can get complex.

For instance, Joe enters a computer store, takes two flash drives and places them in his pocket, then walks out without paying and intending on keeping them. If caught, Joe is charged with theft. Had Joe left in the owner’s car, he would face grand theft. 

What are the different types of theft?

Embezzlement. Fraud. Larceny. Robbery. What is the difference between these terms of thefts? If you haven’t ever been charged with any of these, you may not realize there is a difference. Following is a description of four different thefts and the respective elements of each, after which, we’ll offer some holiday theft prevention tips to prevent, or minimize the chances, of these things, happening.

Larceny aka Theft

Simple theft is also referred to as larceny is a crime involving unlawfully taking property or using the property of another person. Most jurisdictions have different levels of theft charges that can range from a misdemeanor for shoplifting to grand theft for stealing a car. They each have the same basic element of taking something unlawfully that belongs to somebody else.  We will provide holiday theft prevention tips later in this article to prevent theft from your car, home, or workplace.

The variation is shoplifting, the act of taking something from a retail store or grand theft which is something of value, or grand theft auto which is the stealing of a vehicle. The punishment for each of these is dependent upon the type of theft charges that are filed, with some common sentences such as fines, jail time, and/or probation.

Identity Theft

With personal information easily obtained, identity theft has become increasingly common. Identity theft is described as using the name, banking information, credit card, or other personal information of another person without their permission.  Read further on where we will provide holiday theft prevention tips that can save not only your immediate finances but your credit rating. Today, identity theft is a federal crime that is punishable by jail time as well as forfeiture of the property purchased with the stolen funds.

Robbery

Any person using intimidation, threats, or violence to obtain property belonging to another person is considered robbery. Robbery differs from theft because of the added element of intimidating, threatening, or violence, which is typically referred to as either armed robbery or mugging. The penalty for this charge is a heavier penalty than regular larceny because of the intimidation, threats, and/or violence. Unfortunately, this type of crime is high during the holidays, and our holiday theft prevention tips further into this piece will help you minimize, even eliminate them from happening to you.

Fraud

Any person who is deceiving another person with false pretenses to relinquish their property is stealing from them. The difference between fraud and the above-described robbery is the lack of intimidation, threatening, or violence used.

Fraud, like simple theft, can have numerous levels based on the deception involved. For instance, if a person takes property that they were entrusted for safekeeping, it is embezzlement. A fake form of a negotiable instrument, such as phony currency or stolen, this is counterfeiting. When it involves the government and taxes, it is evasion or tax fraud.

Fraud is considered a “white collar” crime and doesn’t typically involve violence. It is performed by way of business dealing and even though the deception involved didn’t include physical force, it is extremely serious and can be financially devastating. These types of fraud can involve enormous amounts of money and/or property and can often involve many victims. There are several sentences for this type of crime from a fine and probation to prison time.

Do you go to jail for first-time theft?

Typically, no, but it is a decision that is made by the sitting sentencing judge. Several factors will be considered in the judge’s decision, such as prior arrests, if the accused had a weapon on their person, and the value of what was stolen. 

How much jail time can you get for theft? 

In Texas, theft less than $50 is a class C misdemeanor. There is fine no more than $500 with no jail time.

Theft more than $50 but under $500 is a class B misdemeanor, including if there is a state driver’s license or ID included in the stolen property. The punishment can be up to 180 days and a fine up to $2,000, or both jail time and fine.

Theft over $500 and under $1500 is a class A misdemeanor. The punishment for this is 1 year or less behind bars and a fine up to $4,000, or both.  

arrested for stealing

Our Holiday Theft Prevention Tips

  • Don’t post your social media status updates before you leave or while you’re gone. Burglars use social network to find the empty houses.  
  • Close your curtains every night as you’re locking doors.
  • Put your ladder away when finished decorating.
  • Watch for your package deliveries
  • Keep your purchases hidden – do not leave them in your car
  • Keep your doors locked
  • Be aware and watch your surroundings. 
  • Install motion-activated lighting around your house
  • Keep your luggage and purse with you while traveling
  • Breakdown gift boxes before placing in recycle bin
  • While shopping online, use only HTTPS sites
  • Never shop on a public network
  • Do not share children’s names, birthdays, or plans online
  • Pay cash when possible, avoiding credit and debit cards
  • Use ID protection tools
  • Keep an eye on your credit cards, especially newly opened ones
  • Watch for skimmers at ATMs and pay for gas inside

Do you have a loved one in need of bond? ATX Bail Bonds is the one to call for bail bonds services in Austin, TX. Call us today at 512.834.2245!