This page answers frequently asked questions and other information regarding posting bail.
You can bail a prisoner out of jail by appearing in person at the Bail/Release window in the Public Safety Building, 115 W. Doty St., Madison, first floor. The jail accepts cash, money orders or cashier’s checks for all bail. Out-of-county money orders and cashier’s checks will be verified for authenticity. Any prisoner going through the Dane County Court system can be bailed out by using a Visa, MasterCard, Discover Card, Diner's Club or American Express credit card, if credit is approved. A transaction fee is automatically added to the cash advance amount. There will be a 5% non refundable fee added to the bail amount. That fee goes to GovPayNet. If you would like to post bail online, please visit: www.govpaynow.com. A booking number is required along with our Pay Location code of 1157. It is up to the courts whether or not they return any of the bail money. Bail returns are processed by the Courts within approximately 21 days of the last mandatory court hearing.
If you are about to post bond for an individual arrested on a felony or misdemeanor, be advised of the following: An appearance in court does not guarantee the return of the bond money. By law the court MUST apply bond money deposited, first towards the payment of any restitution ordered, and then to payment of the judgment. Disbursement of the bond money posted may not occur until the case has been disposed of and may be held up to 120 days after disposition upon a pending Order for Restitution. If the money deposited by an individual other than the defendant is applied towards restitution, and/or judgment, the recovery of the money by the surety is a matter between the parties and not the court.
Failure of the defendant to comply with the terms of bond will result in the court initiating a forfeiture action of the bond deposited. Misdemeanor: §969.02(6) Wis. Stats. When a judgment of conviction is entered in a prosecution in which a deposit had been made in accordance with sub. (2), the balance of such deposit, after deduction of the bond costs, shall be applied first to the payment of any restitution ordered under §973.20 and then, if ordered restitution is satisfied in full, to the payment of the judgment. Felony: §969.03(4) Wis. Stats. If a judgment of conviction is entered in a prosecution in which a deposit had been made in accordance with sub. (1) (d), the balance of the deposit, after deduction of the bond costs, shall be applied first to the payment of any restitution ordered under §973.20 and then, if ordered restitution is satisfied in full, to the payment of the judgment.
A condition of this bond includes, without limitation, the requirement that the defendant appear in person, on the date and at the time set, in the court having jurisdiction, at each court proceeding for which he/she receives notice. This condition applies until the defendant is discharged on final order of the court. (See §969.09 Wis. Stats.)
In the event the defendant fails to appear at the times and places noticed, in addition to other penalties for such non-appearance provided by law, the cash deposited with this bond will be forfeited and in that event, no part of the amount so paid as cash deposit will be returned. If the matter is a criminal charge, a warrant for arrest may be issued upon failure to appear. Persons may be subject to a bail jumping criminal charge.
Defendant will submit to the orders and process of the court (See §969.09 Wis. Stats.)
Written notice shall be given to the Clerk of Courts of any defendant change of address within 48 hours after such change. Said notice shall be sent to the Clerk of Courts at Dane County Courthouse, 215 South Hamilton Street, Room 1000, Madison, WI 53703-3285 or Fax to (608) 267-8859. (See §969.10 Wis. Stats.)
GENERAL CONDITIONS FOR PERSONS CHARGED WITH A MISDEMEANOR OR FELONY
The defendant will neither do, nor cause to be done, nor permit to be done on his/her behalf, any act proscribed as § 940.42 to §940.45 Wis. Stats., and any willful violation of the condition is subject to punishment as prescribed in s. 940.48(3) Wis. Stats. whether or not the defendant was the subject of an order under §940.47 Wis. Stats. (See § 940.49, 969.02, and 969.03(2m) Wis. Stats.)
As a condition of release in all cases, a person shall not commit any crime.