Applying for bail
Bail is a written promise (or ‘undertaking’) to return to court. You can apply for bail if you’re a defendant and you want to be released from custody while waiting for all charges to be dealt with.
On this page:
How bail is dealt with
An application for bail can be considered by the Supreme, District and Magistrates Courts. Generally, you can apply for bail in the court that is dealing with your charges.
If granted, all bail orders are processed as a matter of urgency and often include conditions, such as lodging a sum of money (a ‘surety’) or reporting regularly to a specific police station.
Any money or surety is refunded after the court has dealt with the charges and if you comply with all bail conditions.
See more information on bail:
Applying for bail in the Supreme and District Courts
If no indictment has been presented
If no indictment has been presented in the Supreme or District Court, the Supreme Court must determine your bail application.
To apply, complete:
- Form 2 - Application for bail in the Supreme Court
- Form 11 - Affidavit of justification to support the application.
If you have already applied for bail and been refused, state this in the supporting affidavit and explain any change of circumstances that justifies a reapplication.
Also include any supporting affidavits or other documents.
Serve a copy of the bail application, and any supporting affidavits or documents, on the prosecutor at least two complete business days before the application is to be heard (unless the prosecutor gives an extension of time).
If an indictment has been presented
Once an indictment has been presented, you can apply for bail in the Supreme or District Court by filing Form 3 - Application for bail in the court before which the indictment was presented in the court registry.
What the court considers
When considering your application for bail, the court may consider whether you:
- are accused of a serious crime
- have a place to live
- are employed
- are of good character and background
- have previous criminal convictions
- have breached bail before
- are likely to appear in court
- will endanger the public’s safety or welfare
- will interfere with witnesses or otherwise obstruct the course of justice
- are likely to reoffend.
Conditions on bail
Bail conditions may include:
- a requirement to report to a specific police station on certain days at certain times
- limits on contact, or no contact, between you and the complainant or witnesses
- financial conditions where you must find a person who:
- can guarantee the bail money
- has sufficient assets
- no criminal connections
- a requirement to live at a certain address and/or with a certain person
- curfews for young offenders
- non-consumption of alcohol or drugs, or attendance at rehabilitation.
Breaching bail conditions
If you don’t keep your promise (i.e. if you breach bail), your bail can be revoked.
You may also be charged with breach of bail, arrested without a warrant and brought before the court. Additionally, any surety may be forfeited.
If you choose to represent yourself, the registry will type up the order, sign it and forward a copy to the appropriate jail.
If you are represented, your solicitor will need to lodge two copies of the order, and forward a signed copy to the appropriate jail.
Civil and bail applications by email – Supreme Court (Brisbane)
Only the following interlocutory applications may be considered for application by email:
- Form 9 - Application (UCPR) - Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999
- Form 3 - Interlocutory application - Corporations Law Rules
- Form 2 - Application for bail in the Supreme Court - Criminal Practice Rules 1999 (CPR).
Check the available dates and times in the courts calendars before making a request.
Time estimates must be greater than five minutes and less than two hours. You may make a request only in five minute intervals.
For applications longer than two hours, contact the civil list manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Submitting your application
Send your application to Client Relations at email@example.com. The applications list will respond as soon as the application has been considered.
If the court diary is closed, the matter will not be listed. If the matter is urgent, consult the associate to the senior judge listed in applications court for that week.
Once your application is received and filed, you will be notified by email.
You must comply with the rules regarding serving applications on other parties.
You can file any subsequent documents (such as supporting affidavits) in the usual way up until 4pm the day before the application is to be heard.
If the matter is adjourned
If the application is to be adjourned, all parties to the application may submit Form 11 - Consent adjournment of application to the applications list manager at firstname.lastname@example.org before 4pm on the business day before the application is to be heard.
If a matter is to be adjourned and the parties agree to a costs order, it will be treated as a consent order under Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999, s. 666.