3. Contact the bail program
Question & AnswerHow should I prepare for my bail hearing?
If you don’t have anyone you can ask to be your , you may be able to use the where a caseworker at the courthouse supervises you.
Bail programs differ in the level of support they are willing to provide depending on jurisdiction. Talk to your lawyer or in the jurisdiction you’re in to learn more about the supports the program is able to give you.
In most cases, you will be asked to check-in with a caseworker usually once per week and to follow any other conditions they think are necessary. Sometimes you’re simply required to report on an as needed basis with the program administrators.
How to apply to the bail program
Let your lawyer or duty counsel know if you’d like to use the bail program. The bail program is usually only available to people who are not a threat to the community, and who do not have anyone they can ask to be their surety.
Your lawyer will tell the bail program and a caseworker will interview you in the cells at the courthouse.
The caseworker will ask if you’re willing to follow the bail program requirements. The caseworker will also ask about your criminal record, if you have one.
The bail program may not agree to supervise you if:
- you did not follow the rules when you were in the bail program in the past
- you failed to report as required by the bail program in the past
- you’ve been charged with a serious violent crime
- you haven’t agreed to be supervised by the bail program
If your request to use the bail program is approved, your lawyer and the Crown will be notified. The proposed plan for your supervision will be presented to the court during your .
What you must do if you get in
Typically, if you’re being supervised through the bail program, you must:
- report to your caseworker regularly
- go to counselling or attend an addiction recovery program if required by the bail program
- sign releases that allow your caseworker to check that you’re attending and participating in counselling
- live at the address approved by the bail program and tell them if you’re going to move
If you don’t follow these conditions, the bail program can report you to the police. You could be charged with failing to comply with your bail. If this happens, it will be much more difficult for you to get bail the next time. Also, the bail program may not agree to supervise you if you keep ignoring the conditions of your release.