What to Do When a Family Member is in Jail

A family member being arrested can be a traumatic and horrifying event for those involved, and it can often be worse for family members. Nothing can be as shocking as receiving a call from police, informing you that a family member is in jail. The legal process is difficult and can often be extremely traumatic. Because of this, families often aren’t sure what to do when a family member goes to jail. The following are some considerations in the event that a family member gets arrested. Your family member relies on you for support during this period. This difficult situation can become a little less painful when you know what to do.

1. Be Supportive

Remember that your family member needs to know at this time that they aren’t alone. Your task, in terms of being supportive from the moment of arrest, is psychologically draining and practically difficult in and of itself. But without this, your family will feel isolated in one of the worst settings to be alone.

2. Contact the Facility

There are a lot of things to know when a family member gets arrested. According to OK Bail Bonds, a provider of Bail Bonds in Houston, not only will you need to know the basics of how contact with family is maintained, you’ll need to know the routine in which the facility operates. Often, family members assume there is “one phone call”. What they don’t realize is that the “one phone call” is at the discretion of the jail, and often a few phone lines are overloaded. It will go a long way when it comes to dealing with jail officials by making sure that your family member has help “on the outside”. Many people don’t have a caring family member to help them, so make sure you are there.

3. Make Sure Your Family Member Knows About His or Her Rights

Almost universally, Miranda rights are assumed to be read at the time of arrest. Thanks to the influence of movies and television, there is a tendency to romanticize the reality of rights under incarceration. However, the reality is that officers only need to ask if the arrested are aware of their rights. Because of this, it’s important to make sure that your family doesn’t speak without an attorney present. This is not rude, but it is basic legal procedure. Your family’s interests must come first when it comes to arrests. Make sure that your family member is aware of their rights.

4. Read the Summons

After arrest, bail is usually set, and this is something that is left in the hands of family members. If there are no family members available, then a hearing is set within 48 hours during the regular work week. Once bail is set, the accused is given a summons. According to OK Bail Bonds, a provider of Houston TX Bail Bonds, the summons is important; besides listing precisely what your family member is being charged with, it also lists the court date. It is important that the court date is met! Not doing so will risk making your accused family member a fugitive, and it runs the risk of you losing your bail money. Make sure the summons is followed.