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What Rights Do Inmates Have?

A Man behind jail bars
Have you ever been woken up in the middle of the night to the news that somebody you love has been arrested? You aren't the only one. Many people in Texas find themselves behind bars unexpectedly, and their families are left to pick up the pieces.

While bail bonds can help an individual who has been arrested see release, the truth is that many people do not understand what rights they have after they have been arrested and charged with a crime.

While a bail bonds company may be able to help you with some of your questions about inmate rights and release from prison, this guide will provide you with some additional insights to help you understand the system.

Rights Against Inhumane Treatment

Individuals who have been arrested or even convicted of a crime are not to be subjected to cruel or inhumane treatment behind bars. For example, an individual must not be forced to live in a prison cell infested with rodents and insects, potentially harming their long-term health.

Part of humane treatment means that individuals behind bars have access to food to a reasonable degree and in a reasonable variety. They must also have access to reasonably fitting clothing.

Rights Against Discrimination

A jail cannot discriminate against your loved one on the basis of race, gender, religion, or age. A jail or prison can be sued for discrimination if inmates are treated differently on these bases.

Discrimination issues also apply to individuals who are arrested and disabled. For example, individuals who use wheelchairs have the right to a jail cell that allows them to move and turn in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Rights to Avoid Harassment

According to the Constitution, harassment by prison staff and even other inmates is not tolerated. While harassment does occur, an inmate may have legal recourse to pursue harassment charges because they violate their individual rights, even as prisoners.

Additionally, prisoners have rights to avoid assault by other inmates. This includes sexual assault through the Prison Rape Elimination Act. Guards have a responsibility to keep inmates safe when they are in the state's custody. 

Rights to Medical Care

Sometimes, people are injured in the process of an arrest. According to the law, the prisoner has the right to medical care to treat injuries or illness that arise while in custody. All inmates must receive adequate short-term and long-term care, whether it is for mental illness or a physical injury.

Rights to Bail

The right to bail is spelled out in the Constitution. Unless the court determines a defendant may be a flight risk or a danger to the public, they have the right to bail out of jail. Additionally, the court must set bail at a rate reasonable according to the crime an individual has been accused of.

Earlier in 2018, Texas ruled that Harris County was using an illegal cash bail system. In the past, judges in this county would use a prescribed and pre-set bail pattern rather than assessing each situation individually. This violated the rights associated with due process, especially for defendants unable to afford high-priced bail.

While the Texas bail system may be changing over the years, some things aren't. You can always rely on excellent service with a reliable and trustworthy bail bonds professional. When you work with somebody who understands your questions about the jail and bail process, you have an empathetic partner to help you through it.

Do you have questions about bailing somebody out of jail? Call A-Action Bail Bonds to speak to professionals who understand the inner-workings of Texas jails and the criminal justice system. We offer assistance 24/7 to hand let hose difficult moments. 
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