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Published on 2/6/2024, 12:23:00 PM

Maryland Bond Status Terms Explained

Navigating the complexities of the legal system can often feel like trying to decipher an ancient language. Especially when it comes to understanding bond status terms in Maryland, it's crucial to have a clear guide. Whether you're trying to support a loved one before their bail hearing or find yourself entangled within the system, knowing the nuances of bond terms can significantly impact the course of a case.

That's where we come in. In this comprehensive guide, we'll demystify Maryland's bond status terms, offering you insight into what they mean and how they can affect you or your loved ones. Plus, we'll discuss the invaluable benefits of having a seasoned attorney by your side through this process.

Understanding Maryland's Bond Status Terms

In Maryland, the bond status plays a pivotal role in determining an individual's liberty during the pre-trial phase. Chances are that you've reached this article after looking at Maryland Case search and trying to understand if your loved one is incarcerated, or not. Let's break down these terms in layman's terms:

Release on Recognizance (ROR)

Being released on recognizance means you're free to go without having to pay bond, but with a promise to appear in court when required. Think of it as the court's way of saying, "We trust you'll come back."

Hold Without Bond (HWOB)

This term is as grim as it sounds. If someone is held without bond, they must remain in jail until their court hearing. There are no options for release, making it a critical situation where legal assistance is vital.

Commitment Pending Hearing

After a first appearance, if an individual is held by a commissioner, they'll stay in custody until they see a judge on the next court date. This date is referred to as a bail review It's a waiting game that underscores the importance of legal representation.

Secured Bonds

Secured bonds are not used as often in Maryland. A secured bond is one that requires that a person post a sum of money in exchange for their release. At the conclusion of the case - guilty or not - secured bonds are returned to the person who posted them.

Percentage Bond

A percentage bond allows for release after posting a portion of the total bond amount set by the court. It's a financial compromise, offering a path to freedom for those who can manage it.

Corporate Authorized Bonds

Occasionally a person's bond status will be a high secured bond that is "CORP AUTHORIZED". This means that a bail bondsmen is allowed to post the funds for a Defendant. In this scenario - a Defendant - or his/her family would contact a bondsmen and pay a fee. In exchange the bondsmen will post the entire amount. The bondsmen will have this money returned to him at the conclusion of the case. Often the family will not receive their fee back under this arrangement.

Unsecured Bonds

With an unsecured bond, you sign a promise to pay the bond amount if you fail to appear in court. It's a bond based on trust rather than upfront payment. Failure to appear could result in a judgment against you for the amount that is unsecured.

While these terms might appear straightforward, each situation is unique. That's why checking the court file is crucial, as the case search might not reveal all the conditions or authorizations for release.

The Role of an Attorney in Navigating Bond Status

Why is having an attorney by your side so important? Here's the breakdown:

  • Expert Guidance: An experienced attorney can provide clarity on the bond process, helping to secure the best possible outcome.
  • Negotiation: Lawyers are skilled in negotiating bond terms, potentially reducing the amount or securing a more favorable status.
  • Representation: In court, having an attorney advocate on your behalf can be a game-changer, especially in arguing for bond adjustments.

Our team at FrizWoods has a track record of successfully navigating the Maryland legal system, ensuring our clients receive fair treatment and the best possible defense. Don't just take our word for it; see what our clients have to say on our reviews page.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I be on pretrial but also released on recognizance?

Certain counties will release a person on recognizanece (also commonly called PR or Personal Recognizance), while still requiring that they complete a pretrial supervision program. In this case a person would be released from a detention facility right away; however, they'd need to report to a pretrial supervision unit or face a potential pretrial violation and warrant.

Can I be authorized pretrial but also Hold Without Bond?

Certain counties in Maryland will authorize some form of pretrial release while holding a person without bond. In this scenario, a person should be screened for pretrial services while being detained at a detention facility. If a person is eligible and has a confirmed address, they may then be released and monitored.

What does it mean if the court file doesn't match the case search information?

It's not uncommon for there to be discrepancies between the case search online and the actual court file. The court file is the definitive source of information, so always check it for the most accurate and up-to-date details. Most counties use the Maryland Electronic Courts (MDEC), which is a single Judiciary-wide integrated case management system. This means that an attorney should be able to access the Court file from across the State of Maryland.

Can bond status change after the initial decision?

Yes, bond status can be reviewed and potentially changed by a judge. This is where having an attorney can make a significant difference, as they can request a bond review hearing to argue for better terms.

How can I support someone in custody?

Aside from securing legal representation, staying informed and offering emotional support are key. Understanding the bond status and process helps you navigate the system more effectively and provide the necessary support. You may be able to fill a person's commissary account and phone account to ensure they can call family members and purchase snacks when a person is held without bond.


Understanding Maryland's bond status terms is just the first step in navigating the legal challenges that may arise. With the right knowledge and a skilled attorney by your side, you can face these challenges head-on, ensuring the best possible outcome. At FrizWoods, we're committed to providing our clients with top-notch legal representation and guidance through every step of the process. Whether you are seeking a bond on a DUI, or bond on a gun charge, FrizWoods can help. If you or a loved one are facing legal issues in Maryland, contact us today to see how we can help.

Remember, every situation is unique, and the information provided here is a general guide. For advice specific to your case, consulting with an attorney is always the best course of action.