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Press Releases – California Courts No Longer Requiring the Posting of Bail for Most Criminal Cases during the Coronavius Pandemic

On Monday, California’s Judicial Council, in an emergency session, set bail for all misdemeanors and low-level felonies at “zero dollars” because of the dangers created by the Coronavirus in crowded jails.

However, the Judicial Council, which is the State Court’s policymaker for the Superior Court system, decided violent crimes would not be eligible for the temporary bail reduction. The new bail mandates take effect no later than 5 p.m. on Monday.

In addition, emergency orders issued by the State’s Judicial Council also allow local courts to set up remote hearings via teleconference technology and for counsel to appear on behalf of defendants in pretrial proceedings.

The Judicial Council rules are designed to limit the number of people in jails and courtrooms.

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