What You Need to Know About the Pretrial Fairness Act

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Photo: Pexels Illinois is now the first state in the country to eliminate the cash bail system under the Pretrial Fairness Act, which is part of the SAFE-T Act. This new law went into effect on Monday morning. Here’s what you need to know about this controversial law. What does the Illinois Pretrial Fairness Act do and not do? The Pretrial Fairness Act& eliminates& the use of the money bond. It also makes it that anyone is eligible for pretrial release. After an arrest, individuals will go to an initial hearing before a judge. The judge considers the offense, evidence, defendant’s history and risks for setting the conditions for detaining or releasing the individual. They may use a risk assessment tool and assess existing conditions.& Defendants may be released with judge-imposed conditions or held in jail, with a presumption of release in most cases, except for detention-eligible offenses or where there is a high flight risk.& In essence, it ensures legal representation before the first appearance. For detention-eligible offenses, the State’s Attorney can request a hearing for release or determine that someone be apprehended. The new law& does not call& for the automatic release of individuals charged with serious, violent...