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Bonding people out of custody has been around since the 1400s when people in Europe used to put up assets to get loved ones out of jail. It made its way to America, where people followed the same process. By the time the 20th century rolled around, the system changed in California and the rest of the country. Commercial bail bond agents entered the picture and turned it into a for-profit business. Now, people put up valuable assets or money, and the bail bond agents finance the rest. They make a profit, and the loved one gets out of jail.

The bail industry has changed a lot over the years, but it’s remained a big part of the legal process. But that will change if California Senate Bill 10 passes. This bill will do away with the bail industry altogether.

Bail IndustryWhat is California Senate Bill 10?

California Senate Bill 10 was modeled after a similar bill in New Jersey. The state of New Jersey eliminated the bail and bond system. It replaced it with GPS ankle bracelets and flight risk algorithms. Also, less dangerous people are able to leave jail as long as they promise to appear in court. They are essentially released on their own recognizance.

That’s great news for many, but there is one catch. New Jersey has the ability to flat out deny bail to some people. If that happens in San Diego, people could end up languishing in jail as they await trial. The system isn’t exactly fast in San Diego, so people could spend quite a bit of time in jail while awaiting trial.

The Cost of Transition

The bail bond industry isn’t just a for-profit business. It actually saves taxpayers money by shouldering the burden of bail. If the bill passes, taxpayers will take over that burden.

Steffan Gibbs of All-Pro Bail Bonds expects California taxpayers to spend approximately a billion dollars funding the transition. He gets to this number by analyzing what’s happened in New Jersey. It cost New Jersey $215 million to transition to the system, but California is 4.5 times larger, so he multiplied the cost by 4.5 million and came up with a billion dollars.

The Danger of Not Getting Bail

This isn’t just a financial issue. Pre-trial detection impacts housing stability, child custody, and employment status. People who don’t get out of jail before the trial are also four times more likely to remain in prison once the trial concludes, according to a study by the Harvard Law School Criminal Justice Policy Program.

An Attorney Can Help

The future of the bail bond industry is up in the air for the people of San Diego right now, so you need an attorney more than ever before. Your attorney can help you get affordable bail so you can get out of jail. Also, your attorney can negotiate a pre-trial release if California Senate Bill 10 passes. You don’t want to languish in jail, so contact a San Diego bail bond attorney for help. Your attorney might be your ticket to the outside world.

Author Photo

Kerry L. Armstrong


Attorney Kerry Armstrong opened up his law firm in June 2007. Mr. Armstrong attended Thomas Jefferson School of Law, San Diego, California, and received his B.S. from Middle Tennessee State University. Kerry L. Armstrong became certified by the State Bar of California’s Board of Legal Specialization for criminal law in August 2020, making him one of the few criminal defense attorneys with a criminal law legal specialization certificate in San Diego County.  Between 2014 – 2019, Mr. Armstrong was selected for inclusion in the California Super Lawyers list, an honor only awarded to 5% of the nation’s attorneys.

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