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Bail Conditions Explained 

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The court holds the power to grant bail, with or without conditions.   Conditions are set to reduce an "unacceptable risk."   These conditions must be reasonable, aligned with the severity of the offences, for which bail is granted, and be proportionate with the level of risk they aim to address.   Examples of possible bail conditions are:

  • Actions to Take or Avoid: Like staying away from certain areas, people, or attending drug/alcohol programs.
  • Surety: You or someone suitable pays an amount (surety) that's forfeited if you miss court.
  • Residence: You stay at a court-approved place.
  • Passport Surrender: Hand in your passport before release.
  • Character References: Obtain references showing you'll follow bail.
  • Enforcement: Regular police check-ins, drug tests, or obeying police orders.

Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the options below to learn the answers to frequently asked questions about Bail Conditions Explained .

If you breach a bail condition, the police may:

1. Take no action.
2. Issue you a warning.
3. Issue you a notice to return to court.
4. Serve you a court attendance notice if they suspect you have committed a new offence.
5. Request an arrest warrant.
6. Arrest you and bring you to court.

Factors the police consider include:

  • How serious the breach is.
  • If you had a valid reason.
  • Your personal situation.

If you’re called back to court, the court will review your existing bail conditions and might:

  • Release you again on bail with the same conditions.
  • Change or add new bail conditions;
  • Revoke bail

Usually, a breach of a bail condition does not constitute a criminal offence, unless the breach was due to failure to appear at court and a valid reason is unable to be provided.

Should you fail to appear in court, you may face the following:
Maximum penalty is 3 years imprisonment and/or $3,300 fine.
Orders may be made to forfeit any amount that you or your surety had committed to as per bail conditions.

You have 28 days to object to this order and upon receiving your objection, the court may
(a) revoke the order,
(b) modify the order, potentially reducing the forfeited amount, or
(c) affirm the order.

If the order stands, unpaid money could lead to legal action.

For more assistance, contact KPT Defence Lawyers at (02) 9267 5555.

There might be times when you find it hard to stick to your bail conditions, whether occasionally or regularly.

Dealing with Inability to Comply on a Specific Occasion

There might be times when you’re unable to follow your bail conditions due to specific reasons. This might include:

1. Health issues: If you’re unwell and can’t report to the police or attend a required program, contact the police station and explain your situation. If you were attending a program, inform the coordinator.
2. Unforeseen incidents: If an unexpected event prevents you from adhering to your curfew, let the police know.

In case of illness, it’s a good idea to get a medical certificate and provide a copy to the police. However, having a certificate doesn’t automatically excuse you, unless you can prove that your illness or situation was so severe or unavoidable that you couldn’t follow your bail conditions on that specific day.

When You are Unable to Fully Comply with a Bail Condition

Certain situations may arise that make it difficult for you to fully adhere to your bail conditions. For instance:

  • Change in Circumstances: If you move to a new home or start a job with work hours that conflict with your curfew.

In these cases, our experienced criminal lawyers can assist you in seeking a “bail variation.” This involves requesting a change to one or more of your current bail conditions.

We can communicate with the police or prosecution to explore the possibility of them agreeing to the proposed changes or not opposing the modification of your bail terms.

Our skilled lawyers will inform you about the likelihood of successfully obtaining a bail variation, highlight any potential challenges if the prosecution opposes the change, and handle the necessary court application.

A curfew can be a specified bail condition, particularly for cases involving minors or allegations of nighttime public offences. This measure aims to reduce the risk of further misconduct and is often combined with random police visits to verify compliance with the curfew.

This condition might be imposed if there are concerns about the defendant’s intention to stay at their registered address or if there is a risk of them attempting to flee, potentially leaving the area before their charges are resolved.
How often you’re required to report to the police station depends on various factors, including the distance between your home and the station, and how much it might disrupt your other commitments like work or taking care of children.
The frequency could range from weekly to bi-weekly or even daily visits, at specific times of the day, depending on the circumstances.

Place Restrictions

A place restriction order bars an individual from accessing particular areas or regions for a defined duration, as outlined in section 17A(2)(b).

If the defendant is accused of committing offences in a specific area, they might be subjected to a bail condition that prohibits them from visiting that location while on bail. For instance, this could apply to a certain pub or nightclub.

Bail Address Requirement

In many cases, bail conditions necessitate providing a designated address where the individual will reside during the bail period. This address serves as a point of contact and accountability for the court.

When a specific address is outlined as part of the bail conditions, it’s common for the proposed residence to belong to someone else, such as a partner or parent. In such instances, obtaining the agreement of the property owner or tenant is typically a requirement before the designated address can be accepted by the court as a bail address.
This ensures that all parties involved are aware of and consent to the individual’s presence at the designated address during the bail period. It also contributes to maintaining accountability and compliance with the bail conditions.

A bail surety, also known as a bail guarantor, is an individual who agrees, with the approval of a Magistrate, Judge, or Justice of the Peace, to take on the responsibility of ensuring that the defendant follows all bail conditions and appears at their scheduled court date after being granted bail.

The suitability and character of the surety are assessed by the authorities, considering their relationship with the accused and their ability to provide bail security. The term ‘security’ refers to assets presented to the court by the surety, which the court may seize if the defendant fails to appear at their next court date despite being granted bail.

To qualify as a suitable surety, the potential candidate may need to undergo a criminal record check. They must be at least 18 years old and provide substantial proof of identification. The surety is required to have savings and assets that are debt-free and exceed the value of the bail security amount. Additionally, the surety must independently undertake the responsibility of providing the bail security.

According to Section 86 of the Bail Act 2013 (NSW), it is considered an offence for a person to indemnify another against any forfeiture that might occur under a bail security agreement. Both the person providing the indemnification and the person being indemnified will be considered guilty of an offence if indemnification takes place for any forfeiture.

When submitting security, the surety must provide specific documents to the Court registry. These documents may include the Certificate of Title for any property, bank statements, verifiable evidence of property value, and a valid mortgage document if applicable.

There are two types of bail sureties: ‘surety’ and ‘continuing surety.’ A ‘continuing surety’ commits to ensuring the defendant’s appearance for all future court dates.

If a surety is no longer able to assure the court of the defendant’s compliance with bail conditions or appearance at the next court date, they must apply to the court for release from their surety obligations and inform a police officer. These obligations persist until the court issues an order for their release.

Discharging as a surety often results in the defendant being taken into custody. The discharge process involves completing and submitting an Application for Discharge from Liability to the Court Registry. A date for appearing before a judge and receiving an Order to Appear will be provided to the surety. This order should be served to the defendant, and an Affidavit of Service must be provided to the Court. Both the surety and the defendant are required to attend court for the Application’s hearing.

The judge may either reject the application, release the surety from their obligations, impose new bail conditions on the defendant, or revoke the defendant’s bail and place them in custody.
For more information, reach out to KPT Defence Lawyers at (02) 9267 5555.

A ‘bail surety’ or ‘bail guarantor’ is a person other than the defendant who commits to the Court that the defendant will comply with all bail conditions and appear at their scheduled court date following the grant of bail.

In situations where there is a genuine apprehension that the defendant might attempt to evade justice by leaving the jurisdiction, a bail condition may require them to surrender their passport. This precaution is often deemed necessary when the individual has strong ties to other countries, a history of frequent travel, or significant financial means that could facilitate escape.

The surrender of the passport aims to prevent the defendant from leaving the country and ensure their availability for upcoming court proceedings. It is a measure taken to mitigate the risk of flight and uphold the integrity of the legal process.

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