The Offence of Failure to Answer Bail

by Doogue + George Criminal Defence Lawyers

The Offence of Failure to Answer Bail                                       

Failure to Answer Bail is when someone has been released from custody and is required to attend Court but failed to do so. By legal definition, it is the failure of a person released on bail, without reasonable excuse, to attend in accordance with his or her undertaking of bail and to surrender himself or herself into custody.

Examples of Failure to Answer Bail

A man has been released from jail and has a court date to answer bail but does not attend Court on this date.

What are some of the possible defences to a charge of Failure to Answer Bail?

  • You had a medical emergency.
  • You have a reasonable excuse.

It is not a defence that you forgot, unless there is a medical emergency

There are other possible defences, depending on the circumstances surrounding the alleged offending. Each matter is unique and requires an individual approach and strategy.

Maximum penalty and the court that deals with this charge      

The maximum penalty for this offence is level 7 imprisonment (2 years). This is a summary charge which means that it will generally be heard in the Magistrates’ Court.


The section that covers this offence is section 30 of the Bail Act 1977.

What can you be sentenced to for this charge?

You will most likely get a fine or a Community Corrections Order if you are found guilty. However if you have previously been convicted of this offence you may receive a prison sentence.

If you are facing charges related to a bail offence, it is crucial that you get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible. Doogue + George Defence Lawyers has a team of criminal law specialists that specialise in bail offences and other criminal charges.

To view case studies related to this offence and other relevant resources, visit this page where this article was originally published:


We welcome your feedback

Hi there! We want to make this site as good as it can for you, the user. Please tell us what you would like to do differently and we will do our best to accommodate!

Protected by FormShield

We've updated our Privacy Statement, before you continue. please read our new Privacy Statement and familiarise yourself with the terms.