Oftentimes you are required to post a bond to be released from jail.
There are two ways to post bond:
- A "cash bond" posted with the court. This requires the entire "face amount" of the bond to be given to the court. The "face amount" is the full amount the judge sets as bond. I.e., if the judge sets bond at $5,000.00, a "cash bond" requires that the entire $5,000.00 be given to the court. When the case is over and you have shown up for all of your court dates, whether you were found guilty or innocent, a check for the entire "cash bond" is mailed to whoever posted the bond.
- A "surety bond," which involves a bail bonding company. This requires you to give a percentage of the "face amount" of the bond to the bonding company. This "face amount" is not returned to you. For example, when a judge sets "surety bond" of $5,000 the bonding company requires 10% or $500 cash. The $500 will not be returned to you, even if you show up for court. The bond company then files papers with the court promising that the company will pay the remaining $4,500 if you do not show up for court. Before they agree to post your surety bond, the bonding company will often ask you to provide "collateral" for the $4,500 they would need to pay if you fail to come to court.
There are many bail bond companies in the courthouse neighborhood. The Spokane County Public Defender does not recommend or endorse any specific bonding company.
During business hours bonds must be posted at the court clerk's office. After hours, the bond can be posted at the jail. You can learn more about posting bonds on the Spokane County Detention Services website.