Bail Hearings

The first step after a person is charged with any offence is determining how they will be released pending the outcome of their case. People who have criminal records or are facing serious charges are often held for a bail hearing.


Bail Hearings Lawyer in Toronto Ontario

Have you or someone you care about been charged with a criminal offence? Your first priority is to understand bail.

Bail is an essential part of the criminal process. It will determine if you or your loved one will be released before trial, which may be months or even years away.

Caramanna, Friedberg’s goal is to ensure clients receive a quick and reasonable bail. Failure to receive bail may result in a significant disruption to your job, livelihood and life.

What is a Bail Hearing?

When an individual is arrested, they are generally released by the police back into the community as their case works its way through the court system. The law, however, recognizes that the safety of the public, and the proper functioning of the justice system may require an accused to remain in custody until their day in Court.

If the police do not release an individual after their arrest, an accused individual has the right to be brought to Court for a bail hearing. At a bail hearing, the accused person will have the opportunity to argue their case for release.

What Happens at Bail Hearings?

A Judge or Justice of the Peace have two options at a bail hearing. The accused can either be:

  • Released on bail (subject to certain binding conditions) until their case is heard in Court or;
  • Detained in custody pending the completion of their case.

Most bail hearings include the Crown informing the Court of the allegations made by the police. Hearings can include an accused person, or an accused person's potential sureties, giving evidence on the witness stand to assist the Court in making a decision.  

In Canada, there is a constitutional right for every person to be released on bail pending trial unless there is just cause to hold them in custody.

The instances where an individual will be held without bail are narrow and pre-trial detention is unusual. However, if a Court finds an individual is a threat to the public, a flight risk or detention is necessary to maintain confidence in the administration of justice, an accused person may be held in custody.

We are here to help you with your Bail Hearing

Bail Hearings in Toronto ON

Caramanna, Friedberg LLP can provide you with optimal chances of being released on bail, ensuring a quick reintegration into your life. Our firm has conducted hundreds of successful bail hearings in Ontario. Contact us 24/7 via the contact form below or call us at (416) 924-5969

See also Bail Reviews

Frequently Asked Questions

A surety can decide at any time that they do not wish to be a surety anymore, without any reason. In order to relieve yourself as a surety, you can either bring the accused to court or the police station.

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You can apply to vary any condition of your release order (bail) with the consent of the Crown Attorney. You will need approval of the variation to be signed off by a judge or Justice of the Peace, and your original bail conditions remain in effect until you receive the signed and approved form.  There must be a justified reason for wanting to change a condition of your release order. If the court feels as though they need more information, the court may decide to hold a hearing.

If the Crown refuses to agree to a bail variation request, you can apply for a bail review by a judge of the Superior Court of Justice.

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Many people assume that the bail procedure in Canada is similar to that in the United States, where an accused is required to post a specified amount of money (a bond ) in order to obtain bail. However, this is not how the procedure works in Canada.

In Canada, you do not have to give a cash deposit to the court, in most cases. However, the accused or his or her surety is required to pledge a certain amount of money to the court. The amount pledged is not paid up front, but is a promise that if the accused breaches a condition of his or her bail, the surety may be liable for the amount pledged.

The court may ask for a cash deposit if the accused lives more than 200 km from where they are in custody and/or if he or she is not normally a resident of the province of Ontario.

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The first step is to contact a lawyer. You will also want to prepare answers to the following questions so that your lawyer can canvass and prepare a bail plan for you:

  • Where you will be residing;
  • Who you will be residing with;
  • Who is able to supervise you;
  • What conditions you would not be able to comply with;
  • Information about your schooling, job, or responsibilities you have; and
  • If substance abuse issues are present, how you intend on tackling them (i.e. counselling or treatment).
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The types of conditions that can be ordered as part of a release order vary depending on the accused™s type of release. An accused may be released on his own recognizance (pledging an amount of money), on a recognizance with sureties, or on a recognizance with a deposit.

Depending on a number of factors, including the seriousness of the offence, if released on a recognizance with sureties, a court may require the accused to:

  • Reside at a specific address;
  • Have a curfew;
  • Be on house arrest; or
  • Be on house arrest with an ankle monitor

A court can order the accused comply with a number of conditions, including, but not limited to:

  • To remain within the territorial jurisdiction;
  • To deposit their passport;
  • To notify the police of any change in address, phone number, or employment;
  • The report at certain times to the police or a Bail Supervisor;
  • To not communicate with the complainant or other parties;
  • To not attend at certain addresses or locations;
  • To not possess any weapons as defined by the Criminal Code; and
  • To attend counselling as required.
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At a bail hearing, the Crown and Defence will make submissions as to whether or not the accused should be released on bail. It will then be up to the Justice of the Peace of judge presiding over the bail to decide whether the accused should remain in custody or be released into the community. If the court believes the accused is releasable, they will also have to consider the following:

  • Whether the proposed plan of release is sufficient;
  • The amount of money should be pledged; and
  • What conditions should be imposed as part of the release order.
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When someone is arrested for a criminal offence, the police may release the accused on an undertaking, or they may hold them in custody for a bail hearing. If you are held for a bail hearing, the hearing must be conducted within 24 hours of being arrested if a judge is available, or as soon as practicably possible if one is not. The purpose of the bail hearing is to determine whether:

  • The accused poses a flight risk;
  • There is a substantial likelihood that the accused will commit further criminal offences if released; and
  • Detention is necessary to maintain confidence in the administration of justice, given the gravity of the offence, the circumstances surrounding the commission of the offence, the strength of the Crown™s case against the accused, the likelihood that the accused will serve a lengthy sentence if convicted.
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A surety is an individual who ideally is well-known to the accused and is willing to supervise the accused while they are on bail awaiting their criminal charges to be resolved.

In order to act as a surety, the individual must:

  • Be an adult (18+);
  • Be a Canadian citizen or landed immigrant;
  • Have financial asset(s) to pledge;
  • Not be involved in the offence the accused was charged with;
  • Not be the accused™s counsel;
  • Be able to monitor the accused;
  • Be willing to report the accused if he or she breaches any conditions of the release order; and
  • Not have received any promise or consideration in exchange for being a surety

While not an absolute bar, a suitable surety will also possess the following characteristics:

  • No criminal record;
  • No outstanding charges;
  • Not currently acting as a surety for someone else; and
  • A person with meaningful links to the accused;
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If you breach any of the conditions of your release order, you can be charged with a Failure to Comply, which is a criminal offence. Depending on the circumstances, it can be more difficult to get bail, as a failure to comply suggests to a court that you are unwilling or unable to follow court orders. If released, your bail plans may be stricter than the previous conditions.

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