Tuesday, June 28, 2011

'CAN I LEAVE THE STATE?" AND OTHER BOND VIOLATIONS

You were really looking forward to that great vacation you had planned in the tropics. Unfortunately, when you were leaving a party, you got pulled over by the police. You took your vacation anyway, and now you have violated the conditions of your bail.

What are the rules and what can you do?

When you are charged with an offense, the Court can release you on your own recognizance or in exchange for paying a bond. Either way, the Court imposes certain conditions on your bond. You must appear at all court dates, you cannot break any criminal laws, and you cannot leave the state without court permission. Sometimes, the Court requires you to turn in all weapons along with your Firearm Owner’s Identification Card. Sometimes you must submit to a psychological evaluation or undergo treatment. You may be restrained from contacting certain people or appearing at certain places. You may not be allowed to drink or take drugs.

If you break a condition of your bond, you can be held in jail until your case is over. For example, if you miss a court date, the court can issue a bond forfeiture/warrant, meaning any money you paid is forfeit to the court and if you are picked up, you can be placed in jail. Another problem is if you have to leave the state either for a family emergency or to attend school or simply to take a vacation.

But the good news is there may be a solution. If you need to leave the state for any reason, an experienced criminal law attorney can petition the court to grant you permission to make your trip. If you inadvertently miss a court date, an attorney can ask the court to vacate the warrant against you so that you can remain free pending the resolution of your case. If you committed another crime, the State may petition to violate you on your bond. An attorney can help defend the underlying violation.

If you have questions about this or another related criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email matt@mattkeenanlaw.com.

Source: 725 ILCS 110-10. See: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=072500050HArt%2E+110&ActID=1966&ChapterID=54&SeqStart=15600000&SeqEnd=18000000

(Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)