Bail Amounts by Crime – How Much is Bail? Average Bail Prices

Written by our Subject Matter Experts, Updated on September 25, 2019

Bail Amounts by Crime - Average Bail Prices for Different Misdemeanors and Felonies

Our comprehensive guide shows bail amounts you may see for different crimes, both felonies and misdemeanors. Our experts go into detail to first explain how the bail amount is determined and how it can depend on many factors. We share average bail prices for common crimes such as assault, murder, drug charges, DUI / DWI, and many other crimes. Bail amounts are set by each jurisdiction resulting in variations in the exact bail bond amount set.

Bail Bonds Network’s research focuses on bail amounts set in different states, from high net worth states to lower income areas in order to capture the most comprehensive average bail amounts.


How Is Bail Amount Determined?

While many factors are taken into account when setting the bail amount, the deciding factors that play a role in determining the bail amount are:

  1. Your age
  2. If you have any other current charges
  3. Your criminal history
  4. Prior record of not appearing to court
  5. Your perceived threat or danger to the victim, family, or any member of the public
  6. Record of substance / drug abuse or a threat to oneself by suicide or other means

Significant differences exist in costs of bail bonds depending on the charge being a misdemeanor vs a felony – felony charges can be 5 to 10 times higher due to the potential flight risk from a possible long-term sentence. Capital crimes, such as murder with substantial evidence, may not have a bail amount set due to the significant risk of harm to others. The same applies for major felony charges where there is strong evidence that bodily harm was done.

If a person was previously convicted of a capital crime and served their time and was released, but was later arrested again, that person will typically not be allowed to post bail in most counties.

Laws are in place to protect the arrested person, especially during this vulnerable and difficult time. If the arrested individual is stuck in jail without a bail amount set, or if the bail amount is set at a price that’s above their financial means, then that individual has the right to bring their case to the overseeing judge and the Court of Appeals where they can claim improper process and a lack of fair due-process around reducing the bail amount. Each county and jurisdiction handles this process differently – some more pro-defendant vs others who are more firm in holding the position that was initially set. This is one of the main reasons why bail reform is a sensitive topic.

Average Bail Amounts for Misdemeanor Crimes

How much is bail for assault and battery?
The bail amount for battery against a peace officer (e.g. police officer) is typically around $2,500 although it can be as low as $500 is lower income states like Oklahoma and New Mexico. Battery against a spouse or someone else is much higher – around $10,000. Sexual battery carries a felony charge and is typically attached to a $25,000 bail bond. In lower income areas like New Mexico and Texas, the bail amount is typically set around $2,500 to $5,000 for battery against a family member. The fee to obtain a $5,000 bail bond is usually 10%, so a $500 bail premium is charged to be released on a battery charge. This money is non-refundable and is due to be paid to a bail bondsman or the court.

How much is bail for violation of a restraining order?
Violating a temporary restraining order or any other protective order usually results in a $15,000 bail bond being set, whereas lower income states only set bail around $1,000 as is the case in Washington. In most states, a criminal assessment is made on each individual which can cause the bail amount for a restraining to change significantly. The bail amount can increase 10x the base amount if a person is on the worst “poor” scale of the “excellent” to “poor” criminal history chart.

How much is bail for possession of controlled substance?
Illegal possession of controlled substances comes with a $2,500 bail bond. A second offense results in a $10,000 bail bond, while bonds are set slightly lower at $1,000 for those that are arrested where evidence shows the person is a narcotic addict. States with lower income levels like Utah suggest a bail amount around $500 to $750 and the exact charges are broken out from simple possession of controlled substances to distributing substances, and even altering labels, or mixing the substance in beverages.

How much is bail for a DUI on suspended license?
These offenses can result in arrest separately depending on circumstances, but when combined, they certainly lead to arrest with a bail bond amount set at $2,500.

How much is bail for DUI or DWI?
Depending on the state, a DUI charge can include drug use but is typically tied to alcohol consumption while operating a vehicle. Some states like Texas separate DUI (Driving Under the Influence) and DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) charges while other states group all charges under DUI. DUI charges are often given when the person is below the legal limit but their driving is still negatively impacted. A DWI requires the driver to be over the legal limit.

The first DUI charge can be as low as $500 but many states have increased the bail amount to $2,500. A second DUI increases the bail amount to $10,000. A third DUI charge comes with a $15,000 bail amount and significant legal implications for future driving rights. If a fourth DUI charge is received, the misdemeanor turns into a felony and a $50,000 bail bond is often required. Driving under the influence and causing bodily injury to someone often requires a bail bond of $25,000 in most cases. If there is gross negligence, the charge become a felony and bail is set around $100,000.

States in the South and Midwest where living expenses are typically lower and individuals have lower income, the bail amount set for DUI/DWI starts around $2,500 for the first offense. A 2nd and 3rd offense increased by an additional $2,500. These rates are towards the higher end for low income states. States like Texas and New Mexico take a strong stance against drunk driving and set bail higher to discourage behavior.

How much is bail for public intoxication?
The bail amount is set to $200-500 for public indecency or being overly drunk in public. This is the standard rate across most states and the charge is considered a typical low-level class C misdemeanor. The individual is assessed on their criminal history spectrum despite the light charge. If someone has a significant criminal history, the bail amount can quickly increase to more than $500, with additional stipulations around their release such as alcohol prevention treatment and drug testing. The defendant is responsible for all costs associated with such stipulations.

Average Bail Amounts for Felony Crimes

How much is bail for murder?
There is no bail for murder under certain circumstances. Other murder arrests have a $1 million dollar bail that is typically set. Such cases are reviewed closely and can vary in amount due to the threat risk the person possesses if they were to make bail. Accessory to murder in the 1st degree has a $500,000 bail amount while 2nd degree is set to $250,000.

How much is bail for manslaughter?
The bail bond amount will depend on the charge being voluntary or involuntary. Voluntary manslaughter charges result in a $100,000 bail bond while involuntary charges are $25,000. Driving a vehicle with gross negligence also sets the bail at $100,000. On the lower end of the spectrum, bail amounts are set around $25,000 to $50,000 for manslaughter charges, including intoxication manslaughter. The bond range is set based on risk from low risk to high risk at $50,000. If bail is set at the lowest $25,000 for manslaughter because the individual has a light criminal history and is not a risk, then the individual will still need to come up with 10% of the $25,000 bail amount, which results in a non-refundable bail cost of $2,500 out of pocket to the bail bondman.

How much is bail for kidnapping?
General kidnapping arrests come with a $100,000 bail bond in high-income states like California. If the kidnapping is of a child under 14 years of age, the kidnapping bail can be set to $500,000. Kidnapping for extortion, robbery, or during a carjacking can lead to a $1,000,000 bail amount being set. Lower income states like Oklahoma, Texas, and Georgia carry a bail amount from $25,000 for attempted kidnapping, general kidnapping, and kidnapping for extortion. This can range up to $50,000 if the offender had a previous felony charge. In such cases, judges will often add an even higher bail amount since the person is perceived as high-risk. In most states, the bail amount will not even be set for a kidnapping charge until the first hearing is completed.

How much is bail for robbery?
First degree robbery often comes with a $100,000 bail bond while a second degree robbery comes at $50,000. On the low end, $25,000 is typically the minimum bail amount set for a robbery charge. This includes 2nd degree robberies and robbery of controlled substances that are dangerous. The bail amount for robbery increases to $50,000 minimum for any robberies where a firearm is also used, or if force or fear is used. The bail is set to $100,000 minimum if the person has a previous felony. This means that a robbery bail bond will be charged at the usual 10% bail fee by a bail bondsman which means $2,500 to $10,000 out of pocket (non-refundable) for battery.

How much is bail for carjacking and vehicle burglary?
Carjacking is the violent and illegal take over of a vehicle while the owner is still present. There is typically threat and force involved in the takeover of the vehicle. The bail amount is set between $25,000 and $100,000 for carjacking. A bail hearing is typically required in cases of carjacking before the bail amount is finalized. This charge is not to be confused with general vehicle burglary which doesn’t involve the presence of another person in the vehicle being burglarized. Burglary of a vehicle comes with bail of $2,500 to $5,000 in most states.

How much is bail for assault?
There are varying levels of assault. Assault with a deadly weapon (but not a firearm) often starts with a bail bond around $25,000. Assault with a firearm jumps to $50,000. Any assault with a firearm upon a peace officer or firefighter has a higher $100,000 bail amount. Assault with the aim to commit rape or another sexual offense is treated much more aggressively and the bail can cost as much as $1,000,000. Judges often prefer to set their own bail amounts for domestic assault charges involving family members since these are more sensitive and higher risk matters due to family members sometimes looking to protect their attacks in fear of retaliation.

How much is bail for rape?
Rape arrests often come with a bail bond amount of $100,000 in states like California who take a very aggressive stance against rape. Asset and income levels tend to be higher on the West Coast so the bail amounts reflect those asset levels. In the South and Midwest where income levels tend to be lower, bail amount are around $25,000 for attempted rape or 2nd degree rape charges, and $50,000 for rape in the 1st degree.

How much is bail for arson?
Deliberately setting fire to a object or property is called arson. Arrest over arson has a bail amount anywhere from $7,500 to $200,000 in some states and depending on exact charges. 2nd degree arson (involvement, but not direct), comes with bail as low as $7,500 in some states, while other states will punish it much more aggressively. 1st degree arson starts at $20,000 in most states for the bail amount, but is typically higher around $100,000 on the West Coast and other high income areas. Arson to a structure or forest land costs $50,000 in most states, while arson to a inhabited structure has the higher $200,000 bail amount. Arson during a state of emergency when there are riots and panic in the streets comes with a $150,000 bail amount. The bail cost associated with these charges is usually 10% of the total bail amount set. This fee goes to the bail bondsman and is non-refundable, even if charges are dropped.

How much is bail for burglary?
If the burglary occurs on residential property, the bail amount is typically set around $50,000 if no other violations occur. If there is a sexual offense in addition to the burglary charge, the bail can automatically go as high as $1 million. Any violent assault or endangering behavior also increases the bail amount significantly and can be considered a 1st degree violation. Grand theft and embezzlement come with a $20,000 bail or the value of the stolen items, whichever is greater. Petty theft with a prior conviction for theft is set to $20,000. States like Oklahoma have a lower bail amount set within their bail schedule for burglary. 1st degree burglary in lower income states like Oklahoma is set to $20,000 for the bail amount.

How much is bail for stalking?
The first charge of stalking with no prior rules in place is usually a call for a $20,000 bail cost in California as an example, and just $10,000 for the 2nd charge in Oklahoma (the judge is involved in the first charge in Oklahoma regulations). If there is a restraining order in place that is violated for stalking, the bail amount will typically rise. Having a prior violation of the restraining order and being arrested for a second stalking case usually increased the bail amount to a much higher amount. In most states, the judge will want to have a preliminary hearing to learn more about the case to determine where the bail should be set. Stalking charges are often filed in the heat of the moment and officials have to comb through the details carefully to determine true risk of the offender.

How much is bail for murder?
Attempted murder has a strict bail bond that is normally set around $500,000. Willful and premeditated murder is served with a $1 million bail. Soliciting murder is also a $1 million bond, however many states hold a firm “no bail” stance on 1st degree murder charges or where attempt or conspiracy to commit murder occurred. 2nd degree murder and being an accessory to murder has a $500,000 bail amount associated with it, whereas soliciting murder has a $100,000 bail amount.

How much is bail for concealed weapon charges?
An arrest for having a concealed weapon on a person or in a vehicle without license can yield up to a $20,000 bail amount. Typically, these charges occur with prior felony convictions or prior violations of deadly weapons. The same applies if the concealed weapon carrier has a with prior conviction where a crime occurred against anther person, property, or involving drugs.

How much is bail for illegal possession of a loaded weapon?
The bail amount set can vary from state to state as firearm laws can vary quiet substantially. The bail amount is set around $20,000 in states like California where weapon laws are strictly enforced, whereas the charge in Oklahoma is just $500 for illegal possession of a weapon. The criminal history and details of the arrest can play a major role in determine the threat of the arrested person.

How much is bail for a hit and run?
If bodily injury or death occurs, the bail bond is set to $50,000 in California and $10,000 in most other areas where income levels tend to be lower. If no injury or death occurred, the amount drops to $5,000 in most states. The bail amount will be higher if alcohol or drugs were involved.

How much is bail for possession of drugs?
Minor amounts of drugs are often classified as misdemeanors as long as they are not repeat offenses, although this depends from state to state as some states take a more aggressive stance against any drug violation. If a person is arrested for larger quantities of drugs, whether for personal consumption or resale, the penalties fall under felony violations and come with much stiffer bail amounts. The bail amount set rises quickly, with $100,000 for more than 1 lbs, 1 to 3 kilos at $500,000 and 4-10 kilos at $1 million in California. Most other states will not have a set bail schedule for drug charges by quantity. Such states focus on 1st and 2nd offenses where the first charge is around $2,500 bail and the 2nd charge closer to $5,000. If significant drug volumes are involved, bail falls into a separate class where a preliminary hearing is held and much stiffer penalties are assessed. For example, selling marijuana and having a previous conviction will come with a minimum $50,000 bail bond.

How much is bail for marijuana arrest?
Marijuana is legal in a few states for medical and personal use. States that have not legalized marijuana typically focus on a simple misdemeanor charge for a first time offense if someone has marijuana in their system or was caught in possession with a small amount. Marijuana charges and arrest can quickly escalate to significant felony levels if the person is found to be illegally growing marijuana which typically ends with a $5,000 to $20,000 bail bond being set. Possession of marijuana with the intent to sell starts with a $5,000 bail in most states, while some states with higher levels of living and higher income levels set bail around $20,000.


Who Sets The Bail Amount?

The bail amount can be set forth in the bail schedule for each county jail, or by a judge or magistrate.

  1. Bail Schedule
  2. Many counties have bail schedules that show bail prices for different crimes. These are starting points when it comes to bail amounts. If the arrested person is not a repeat offender who presents significant risk outside of the standard levels, the bail schedule will typically apply. Posting the bail amount on the bail schedule is the fastest way to be released from jail.

  3. Magistrate
  4. The magistrate is an official who is below the judge. Magistrates often handle the process of setting the initial bail amount per county guidelines. They are used more frequently if bail schedules are not publicly accessible in their jurisdiction, and they handle lighter crimes like misdemeanors but also various felonies. A meeting can be set with the magistrate to push back on the bail amount set if the bail price was set at an unreasonable amount for the defendant.

  5. Judge
  6. Bail amounts can be set by judges for more significant felonies. Judges are also involved in the bail amount if the defendant makes a claim against the initial bail amount set, especially when lawyers and an official complaint is filed. We often see this in the media when popular public figures are arrested and various court hearings are scheduled to determine if the bail amount can be adjusted, or if a ruling of “cash bail” only or even no-bail can be reduced to something more obtainable.

Unfortunately, in states where the magistrate handles the setting of bail amounts, there can be a wide range of prices set. While there are rules and guidelines for magistrates to follow, it does not guaranteed that judgement and bias won’t come into play. “Stereotyping” might be too facile to describe the behavior, but it’s not out of question for magistrates and judges to draw unfair conclusions when it comes to the bail amount set. A lawyer should be involved if the crime is significant or if the defendant feels unfairly treated in the hearings. This gray area and uncertainty around how bail will be set by a magistrate or judge leads us back to bail schedules. It’s usually a benefit to see bail schedules posted in counties. Not all counties have them but it’s the first thing to check – and if the bail amount is unattainable in the fee schedule, then a magistrate or judge can be consulted as an alternate option to lower costs.


How Can Bail Amount Be Lowered?

To reduce the bail amount set, it’s highly recommended to proactively pursue all of the below options to increase the odds of the judge lowering the bail amount.

  1. Electronic Monitoring Device
  2. Terms should be laid out by the county officials in clear writing that explains how the technology works and any limitations or inaccuracies with the geo specific monitoring, as well as steps to take if an issue arises due to technology. The exact geo fencing lines should be explained so the defendant clearly understands the limitations around movement to stay within allowed geo boundaries.

  3. Alcohol / Drug Vehicular Locking System
  4. If arrest resulted because of drug or alcohol use while operating a vehicle, it’s highly recommended to proactively approach the court to voluntarily install an ignition locking device to ensure the vehicle will not be operated while under influence. Costs will need to be covered by the person seeking release from jail.

  5. Bond Reduction Letter
  6. Write a letter to the judge requesting a reduction of the bail amount. Make it emotional and make sure it comes from the heart. The letter should touch on your personal relationship to the arrested person, and why you are vouching for them, and reasons why their bail amount should be reduced. Use various suggestions in this article to recommend proactive steps that the person is willing to take (and that you’re willing to supervise) to ensure a successful transition back into the real world.

  7. House Arrest
  8. Offer the court the option of house arrest, ensuring you will limit your travel and will only leave the premise under supervision and prior agreement.

  9. Curfew
  10. Returning at a set time limits risk for the court and shows goodwill from the defendant. Most crimes occur after-hours.

  11. Voluntary Drug Testing / Rehab
  12. Costs will need to be covered by the defendant. Scheduling is set by the courts randomly for drug testing. Rehab or alcohol intervention is highly recommended and further shows the proactive steps taken by the defendant. Agreeing to these terms must be done in writing. Not following through with the commitments can lead to re-arrest with increased bail set, and possibly unattainable conditions for release. It’s important to note that additional fees are possible for equipment, supervision, and drug testing.




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Our Team of Subject Matter Experts

We dedicate ourselves to providing information that is accurate and expertly written in order to assist individuals through a difficult time. Our staff at Bail Bonds Network is highly educated, having obtained prestigious degrees in law, business, accounting, and finance. Our editorial staff includes professional lawyers, bail bondsmen, and lending experts who understand local jurisdictions and intricacies of legal matters dealing with bail bonds.

Adi Dzebic
MBA, Research & Marketing
Owner of Bail Bonds Network, specializing in quality content research, analyzing bail bondsmen that are featured on our website, and general content contributions that are verified by our expert panel.
Matt C. Pinsker
Criminal Defense Attorney

An award-winning criminal defense attorney. He previously served as a state and federal prosecutor and magistrate, making his content contributions extremely relevant on legal and bail related topics.

Fred Shanks
Licensed Bail Bondsman
Fred Shanks is a licensed bail bondsman and the owner of Apex Bail Bonds. Fred is our bail expert who reviews and contributes to our content to ensure we have accurate and complete bail information.
Zlatan Dzebic
Finance / Lending Specialist
Zlatan's experience in credit and lending is vital since many important factors, such as credit history, over-leveraging, and predatory loan options can have a long term impacts when looking for financial assistance.