Posted 8/30/2014

In State v. Lora, 2014 WL 4175724 (N.J.Super.A.D. August 25, 2014) the defendant was arrested and incarcerated on new charges.  The surety moved for release and exoneration of its obligations.  The agreement signed by the defendant stated that on re-arrest or incarceration of the defendant the surety “reserves the right to apply to the court with which the bond was posted to have the bail bond . . . revoked and/or request a warrant for the defendant’s arrest.”  The trial court found that the surety’s right to apply for revocation of the bond did not mean the court had to grant such relief.  The court thought that the surety would have had a winning argument if the agreement had said that “Defendant shall not be arrested or incarcerated.”  Under the agreement as written, however, the trial court found that the issue was whether the surety’s risk was substantially increased.  The trial court thought that it was not and denied the surety’s motion.  The Appellate Division agreed with the trial court that a material, adverse change in the surety’s risk was the proper test but found that the record on appeal was inadequate to review the trial court’s decision.  The Court, therefore, remanded the case to the trial court with directions to reconsider the surety’s applications including consideration of the impact of a new indictment, with a $250,000 cash only bond, in another county.

People v. Alex Padilla Bail Bonds, 2014 WL 4180302 (Cal.App. August 25, 2014) held that after expiration of the extended appearance period the trial court Commissioner could enter summary judgment against the surety.  Penal Code §1306(a) provided that “the court which has declared the forfeiture shall enter summary judgment . . . .”  The judgment could be entered on an ex parte basis, therefore pursuant to Code of Civ. Proc. §259(a) the Commissioner had authority to enter it.  The Court reversed the trial court order setting aside the summary judgment.  The Court also discussed whether the $25,000 bond was a “limited” case for appellate jurisdictional purposes but held that it was not because it had not been designated as “limited” in the trial court.  The Court also noted that recent amendments to Penal Code adding §1305.5 clarified the issue of which court had appellate jurisdiction.  [Not published].