Pennsylvania Bail Laws

The following information is the most current bail laws in Pennsylvania.

Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Pennsylvania may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.

1. Applicable Statutes

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED TITLE 42. JUDICIARY AND JUDICIAL PROCEDURE PART VI. ACTIONS, PROCEEDINGS AND OTHER MATTERS GENERALLY CHAPTER 57. BONDS AND RECOGNIZANCES SUBCHAPTER B. PROFESSIONAL BONDSMEN.

B. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CHAPTER 4000. BAIL PART III. GENERAL PROCEDURES IN ALL BAIL CASES Rule 4016.

2. Licensing Requirements for Agents

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED TITLE 42. JUDICIARY AND JUDICIAL PROCEDURE PART VI. ACTIONS, PROCEEDINGS AND OTHER MATTERS GENERALLY CHAPTER 57. BONDS AND RECOGNIZANCES SUBCHAPTER B. PROFESSIONAL BONDSMEN § 5741. Definitions

(1) engages in the business of giving bail, giving or soliciting undertakings, or giving or soliciting indemnity or counter-indemnity to sureties on undertakings; or

(2) within a period of 30 days has become a surety, or has indemnified a surety, for the release on bail of a person, with or without a fee or compensation, or promise thereof, in three or more matters not arising out of the same transaction.

B. § 5742. Registration and licensure required

C. § 5743. Issuance of license

(1) an application for registration and licensure as a professional bondsman; and

(2) an annual license fee of $50; shall, if it approves the application, register the applicant as a professional bondsman and issue him a license.

(b) Duration.–Each license shall be valid for one year following the date of issue.

(c) Nontransferable.–No license issued under this subchapter shall be assigned or transferred.

D. § 5744. Office

3. Notice of Forfeiture

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CHAPTER 4000. BAIL PART III. GENERAL PROCEDURES IN ALL BAIL CASES-Rule 4016. Procedures Upon Violation of Conditions: Revocation of Release and Forfeiture; Bail Pieces; Exoneration of Surety.

(a) When a monetary condition of release has been imposed and the defendant has violated a condition of the bail bond, the bail authority may order the cash or other security forfeited and shall state in writing or on the record the reasons for so doing.

(b) Written notice of the forfeiture shall be given to the defendant and any surety, either personally or by both first class and certified mail at the defendant’s and the surety’s last known addresses.

4. Allotted Time between Forfeiture Declaration and Payment Due Date

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CHAPTER 4000. BAIL PART III. GENERAL PROCEDURES IN ALL BAIL CASES-Rule 4016. Procedures Upon Violation of Conditions: Revocation of Release and Forfeiture; Bail Pieces; Exoneration of Surety

(c) The forfeiture shall not be executed until 20 days after notice of the forfeiture order.

5. Forfeiture Defenses

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTESANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CHAPTER 4000. BAIL PART III. GENERAL PROCEDURES IN ALL BAIL CASES-Rule 4016. Procedures Upon Violation of Conditions: Revocation of Release and Forfeiture; Bail Pieces; Exoneration of Surety

(1) A bail authority, in his or her discretion, may exonerate a surety who deposits cash in the amount of any forfeiture ordered or who surrenders the defendant in a timely manner.

(2) When the conditions of the bail bond have been satisfied, or the forfeiture has been set aside or remitted, the bail authority shall exonerate the obligors and release any bail.

6. Remission

(d) The bail authority may direct that a forfeiture be set aside or remitted if justice does not require the full enforcement of the forfeiture order.

7. Bail Agent’s Arrest Authority

The Pennsylvania statutes do not explicitly grant arrest authority, though such may be implied from the following statute.

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTESANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CHAPTER 4000. BAIL PART III. GENERAL PROCEDURES IN ALL BAIL CASES- Rule 4016. Procedures Upon Violation of Conditions: Revocation of Release and Forfeiture; Bail Pieces; Exoneration of Surety

(1) A bail authority, in his or her discretion, may exonerate a surety who deposits cash in the amount of any forfeiture ordered or who surrenders the defendant in a timely manner.

8. Other Noteworthy Provisions

A. PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES AND CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED PURDON’S PENNSYLVANIA CONSOLIDATED STATUTES ANNOTATED TITLE 42. JUDICIARY AND JUDICIAL PROCEDURE PART VI. ACTIONS, PROCEEDINGS AND OTHER MATTERS GENERALLY CHAPTER 57. BONDS AND RECOGNIZANCES SUBCHAPTER B. PROFESSIONAL BONDSMEN § 5746. Suspension or revocation of license

(1) Violation of any of the provisions of this subchapter.

(2) Fraudulently obtaining a license under the provisions of this subchapter.

(3) Upon conviction for any criminal offense under the laws of this Commonwealth or under the laws of the United States or any other jurisdiction.

(4) Upon being adjudged a bankrupt or insolvent.

(5) Failing to pay any judgment rendered on any forfeited undertaking in any court of competent jurisdiction.

(6) Any interference or attempted interference with the administration of justice.

B. § 5748. Maximum premiums

C. § 5749. Prohibitions and penalties

9. Noteworthy State Appellate Decisions

A. Com. v. Horce
726 A.2d 1067
Pa.Super.
Mar 03, 1999

B. Com. v. Mrozek
703 A.2d 1052
Pa.Super.
Dec 16, 1997

C. Com. v. Atkins
434 Pa.Super. 559, 644 A.2d 751
Pa.Super.
Jun 23, 1994

10. Bounty Hunter Provisions

At this time, there appear to be no specific regulations for “Bounty Hunters” in the Pennsylvania statutes.

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