Why is bail so high?

Bail, also known as a “recognizance of bail“, is a court order that lets you remain in the community while your case is in the court system.

A bail hearing is not a trial. The judge or justice of the peace doesn’t decide whether you’re guilty or innocent. Instead, they decide whether or not you should go back into the community while your case is in criminal court. If you’re denied bail you will be kept in custody while your case is ongoing.

A bail hearing is also known as a show cause hearing. That is because usually the Crown must “show cause” why you shouldn’t be released from custody on the least strict type of release: an undertaking without conditions.

An undertaking without conditions lets you be released from custody as long as you promise to go to court when required. If the Crown wants you to follow more conditions if you’re released, they must explain to the judge or justice of the peace why.

Sometimes, you may need to “show cause” why you should be allowed to go back into the community while your case is in court. This is called a “reverse onus” bail hearing. A reverse onus bail hearing happens if:

  • you were already on a release and now you’re facing new, unrelated criminal charges
  • you were already on a release and you didn’t follow your conditions, and have been charged with failure to comply
  • you were charged with a drug offence involving the sale of drugs
  • you were charged with certain serious offences

At a bail hearing, a judge or justice of the peace will decide if you should be held in custody or released. If you’re granted bail, you will likely have to follow conditions given to you by the court.

How Bail Is Determined

A judge sets the bail amount and generally adheres to standard practices depending on the crime. For example, a petty and nonviolent offense could have a bail amount of $50-$2,000 depending on the jurisdiction. However, judges are also able to set higher or lower bail amounts for different circumstances. The amount is determined based on additional factors such as whether the defendant is a first offender or has a prior criminal record; whether the person is a potential flight risk; and how dangerous the person is to the public.

Along with the bail charge, the court can issue two types of bond: secured or unsecured. With a secured bond, the defendant either pays – or promises to pay, using the services of a bail bond agent – an amount of money before he or she is released from jail pending trial. With an unsecured bond, the defendant is released upon his or her written promise to appear in court, and if he or she doesn’t appear, must then pay the full bail amount.

Misdemeanors come with much lower bail amounts than felonies do. In both categories, there are different classes that determine the duration of punishment and the bail amount. In some jurisdictions, there are bail schedules that recommend a standard bail amount. For example, for a Class 1 Misdemeanor offense, the minimum jail time could be between 1 and 45 days with a suggested bail cost of $100-$500. Alternatively, for a Class E Felony offense, the minimum jail time could be 15 months with a suggested bail cost of $25,000.

Bail As Incentive

Another reason bail costs are so high is that bail is designed to act as an incentive. In order for the bail money to be refunded at the end of trial, the defendant must attend all court appointments and not violate any other terms of bail (for example, not leaving the state, not committing any additional crimes, etc.). The high cost of bail means that defendants are much more likely to adhere to the conditions of their release so that they don’t lose all the money they (or a bond agent or family member) have put up.

Contact Us

If you’re dealing with an unexpected arrest and need assistance with posting bail for a friend or loved one, contact our Bail Bonds Division today. We’ll work with you to alleviate the high cost of bail and to ensure your loved one’s quick release from jail.

Murder & Manslaughter:Criminal Attorney In Burlington

Murder and manslaughter and all other cases involving a death are usually more complex and emotional than any other matter. Anything you say or do can potentially hurt your case. Contacting a lawyer immediately will help protect your rights and ensure that proper procedures are followed.

More importantly, consulting our firm will help you understand the specifics of the criminal charges against you, and how to best defend your case. At Leo Adler Law, we helped individuals in Toronto, in Ontario and elsewhere in Canada with legal defences for:

  • First and second degree murder
  • Attempted murder
  • Manslaughter
  • Negligence causing death
An audience member raises a hand as President Barack Obama finishes his closing remarks at the NAACP Convention in Philadelphia, Pa., July 14, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

Defending Murder Charges

In Canada there is no charge more serious than an allegation of murder or manslaughter. Homicide offences, including first-degree murder, second-degree murder and manslaughter can attract lengthy jail sentences including the potential for life in prison. Clients facing murder or manslaughter charges need to very carefully consider the lawyer they want to hire to assist them with this most serious of matters.

Daniel Brown is among a select group of criminal defence lawyers who are certified as specialists in criminal law and has successfully represented numerous clients charged with murder, manslaughter and attempted murder. He has also obtained bail pending trial for several of his clients facing a murder allegation.

Understanding Murder and Manslaughter Charges in Canada

Of all violent offences, murder is the most serious crime in Canada. If convicted, the accused will face mandatory life imprisonment.

Murder charges are either first or second degree. First degree murders are ones that are committed with planning and deliberation. Murder is also first degree if the victim is a police officer or jail guard or if it occurs during the course of a kidnapping, sexual assault, hostage­-taking, or hijacking. All other murders are second degree.

A conviction for murder will result in a mandatory life sentence with variable parole eligibility. First degree murderers will not be eligible to apply for parole for 25 years, while second degree murderers must wait at least 10 years or more depending on the sentencing judge’s ruling.

Manslaughter charges are different, but similarly serious. Manslaughter refers to a homicide where the accused commits an unlawful act which causes the deceased‘s death without intending to actually kill him or her. This often occurs during self­-defence scenarios where there was an unreasonable escalation of force, or as a result of negligent driving or the illegal possession of firearms.

The seriousness of these charges demands special protocol both for the investigation and bail process. Police investigations are typically conducted by special teams who deal exclusively with murder and other violent offences. The investigation itself is often much more invasive, and the interrogation process is particularly stringent, with any and all replies given to police liable to be used against you in court.

For this reason, the first thing you should do upon being arrested for a violent offence is to contact a murder or manslaughter lawyer in Toronto; qualified legal representation can ensure Charter compliance during your investigation, and help you circumvent cases of false confessions. The bail procedure for individuals involved with murder or manslaughter cases is also different, requiring the legal expertise of a seasoned criminal defence lawyer in Burlington to navigate successfully.


Addiction is a disease that affects your brain and behavior. When you’re addicted to drugs, you can’t resist the urge to use them, no matter how much harm the drugs may cause.

Drug addiction isn’t about just heroin, cocaine, or other illegal drugs. You can get addicted to alcohol, nicotine, opioid painkillers, and other legal substances.

At first, you may choose to take a drug because you like the way it makes you feel. You may think you can control how much and how often you use it. But over time, drugs change how your brain works. These physical changes can last a long time. They make you lose self-control and can lead you to damaging behaviors.


Drug abuse is when you use legal or illegal substances in ways you shouldn’t. You might take more than the regular dose of pills or use someone else’s prescription. You may abuse drugs to feel good, ease stress, or avoid reality. But usually, you’re able to change your unhealthy habits or stop using altogether.

Addiction is when you can’t stop. Not when it puts your health in danger. Not when it causes financial, emotional, and other problems for you or your loved ones. That urge to get and use drugs can fill up every minute of the day, even if you want to quit.


Your brain is wired to make you want to repeat experiences that make you feel good. So you’re motivated to do them again and again.

The drugs that may be addictive target your brain’s reward system. They flood your brain with a chemical called dopamine. This triggers a feeling of intense pleasure. So you keep taking the drug to chase that high.

Over time, your brain gets used to the extra dopamine. So you might need to take more of the drug to get the same good feeling. And other things you enjoyed, like food and hanging out with family, may give you less pleasure.

When you use drugs for a long time, it can cause changes in other brain chemical systems and circuits as well. They can hurt your:

  • Judgment
  • Decision making
  • Memory
  • Ability to learn

Together, these brain changes can drive you to seek out and take drugs in ways that are beyond your control.


Each person’s body and brain is different. People also react differently to drugs. Some love the feeling the first time they try it and want more. Others hate it and never try again.

Not everyone who uses drugs becomes addicted. But it can happen to anyone and at any age. Some things may raise your chances of addiction, including:

Family history. Your genes are responsible for about half of your odds. If your parents or siblings have problems with alcohol or drugs, you’re more likely as well. Women and men are equally likely to become addicted.

Early drug use. Children’s brains are still growing, and drug use can change that. So taking drugs at an early age may make you more likely to get addicted when you get older.

Mental disorders. If you’re depressed, have trouble paying attention, or worry constantly, you have a higher chance of addiction. You may turn to drugs as a way to try to feel better.

Troubled relationships. If you grew up with family troubles and aren’t close to your parents or siblings, it may raise your chances of addiction.


You may have one or more of these warning signs:

  • An urge to use the drug every day, or many times a day.
  • You take more drugs than you want to, and for longer than you thought you would.
  • You always have the drug with you, and you buy it even if you can’t afford it.
  • You keep using drugs even if it causes you trouble at work or makes you lash out at family and friends.
  • You spend more time alone.
  • You don’t take care of yourself or care how you look.
  • You steal, lie, or do dangerous things like driving while high or have unsafe sex.
  • You spend most of your time getting, using, or recovering from the effects of the drug.
  • You feel sick when you try to quit.


If your drug use is out of control or causing problems, talk to your doctor.

Getting better from drug addiction can take time. There’s no cure, but treatment can help you stop using drugs and stay drug-free. Your treatment may include counseling, medicine, or both. Talk to your doctor to figure out the best plan for you.

Theft Vs Burglary

Your house is one of your most important assets, so insuring it should be just as important. Given the frequency of natural calamities, the importance of home insurance can’t be stressed enough. But a house insurance policy doesn’t just insure your house against natural catastrophes, it also insures the contents of the house against burglary. But did you know that your house insurance policy will not cover theft? So what is the difference between burglary and theft? Let’s find out.


There are two types of insurance policies to cover your house: basic fire insurance policy and a comprehensive policy, also called the householder’s package policy (HPP). The fire policy covers your house and its contents against fire and other allied perils, including storm and flood. Some insurers may ask you to pay an extra premium to cover other natural disasters such as earthquakes.

HPP, over and above the fire insurance policy, includes covers that insure contents of your house against burglary and mechanical or electrical breakdowns. You can also add covers such as a public liability cover, which compensates a third party for losses caused by you; or a personal accident cover offering insurance on accidental death or total permanent and partial disability due to an accident.


While a packaged home insurance policy offers financial protection in case of damage due to natural calamities, it also compensates you if somebody breaks into your house and steals your valuables. Burglary is a real threat and it is good that your insurance covers it. But you must go through the insurance policy’s details to know how it defines burglary. While you may use the words burglary and theft interchangeably, the two have a different meanings in law and this distinction is observed by the insurers too. Burglary, by definition, involves a break-in through violent or forcible means. So if a person breaks a window to get into the house or break open your cupboard to steal, it is considered burglary. Usually, an HPP covers burglary but not theft.

Theft would mean the person committing the crime had access to the house or its valuables. For example: you may have dropped the keys of your house near the door, and come back home to discover your jewellery stolen. This is more a case of negligence. The insurer could say that you should have kept the keys safely. The reason why insurers don’t cover theft is because it is difficult to administer and often can be due to negligence. But some insurers also offer theft insurance as an add-on cover to the HPP.


As soon as you discover a burglary, file a first information report (FIR) and intimate the insurer. The insurer will need the copy of the FIR and will also ask for an incident report. It will then appoint a surveyor to investigate the claim. Once approved, the insurer will typically pay for the insured assets on market-value basis.

Information about Theft over and under $5000 depending on the value of the amount alleged to have been stolen.

It is considered a “property offence” and it is not uncommon for an accused person to have multiple counts of theft alleged if the conduct accused of took place over a certain period of time. Theft charges usually involve retail theft, including shoplifting and price-switching, breach of trust situations involving employers, and large scale thefts involving vehicles or construction equipment.

These charges may sometimes be laid along with fraud charges. Depending on the circumstances of your case, your theft charge may be difficult for the Crown prosecutor to prove, or your constitutional Charter rights may have been violated during your arrest. As in all criminal cases, entering a plea of guilty to a fraud charge can have profoundly serious consequences. Having a criminal record may effect your work, your immigration status, your reputation, your family and your personal freedom.

What is the possible penalty for Theft Over $5000?

Under the Criminal Code of Canada, Section cc. 322.(1), every one who is found guilty of Theft Over $5000 is guilty of an indictable offense that is punishable by a term of imprisonment up to ten years.

What is the possible penalty for Theft Under $5000?

Under the Criminal Code of Canada, Section cc. 322., every one who is found guilty of Fraud Under $5000 is guilty of an indictable offense that is punishable by a term of imprisonment up to two years, or in less serious cases, by an offence punishable on summary conviction.