Sheriff – Jail Division – Frequently Asked Questions
What happens when a prisoner goes to jail?
When a prisoner is brought into the facility, they will need to be processed (booked). This includes being searched, having the arrest report completed, and being fingerprinted and photographed. How long this takes depends on how many prisoners are being processed at that time, and how cooperative the prisoner is. Uncooperative or intoxicated prisoners will be processed as soon as the booking officer is able to do so. Prisoners are processed in the order that they are brought in. After processing, prisoners are then placed into a holding cell pending magistration (times vary and depends on the Judge’s schedule). Magistration is the procedure where a prisoner charged with an offense and is brought before a Magistrate (Judge) and the Magistrate informs the prisoner of his/her Constitutional Rights and of the charge/charges that have been brought against him/her and sets the Bail amount.
“Bail” is the security given by the accused that he will appear and answer before the proper court the accusation brought against him, and includes a bail bond or a personal bond.
What is bail?
“BAIL” is the security given by the accused that he will appear and answer before the proper court the accusation brought against him, and includes a bail bond or a personal bond.
What Is a bail bond?
A “Cash Bond” is a contractual agreement between the accused and the Court having jurisdiction over the offense, ensuring that the defendant will appear in court. The defendant posts the dollar amount of the Bond, which will be returned to him upon his appearance in court. (Verify with District or County Clerk for clarification of actual procedures) Hays County District Clerk – 512-393-7660 Hays County Clerk – 512-393-7738.
“Surety Bond” is a contractual agreement between the accused, a Bail Bondsman and the Court having jurisdiction over the offense, ensuring that the defendant will appear in court. The defendant pays a fee to the Bail Bondsman, who in turn posts the dollar amount of the Bond, which will be returned to the Bail Bondsman upon appearance of the defendant in court.
A “Personal Bond” is a contractual agreement between the accused and the Court having jurisdiction over the offense, ensuring that the defendant will appear in court. The defendant is not required to post the dollar amount of the Bond, rather is released on his own recognizance. However, if the defendant fails to appear in court, the defendant is then indebted to the court for the amount of the Personal Bond.
What is bail punishment?
“Bail” is not a punitive measure, rather a guarantee that the person charged will return for court. The Magistrate will examine many factors including, State and County of residence, employment, marital status, dependents, prior failures to appear, seriousness of offense, etc.. The greater the risk that the person will not return for his trial, the higher the amount the bail that is set.
How do I contact a bail bondsman?
Most bail bond company’s are available 24 hours a day. Hays County is a Bail Bond Board County which means bonding companies must be licensed in order to post bonds. An approved list of bonding companies is available at the Sheriff’s Office and is rotated weekly. Sheriff’s Office employees may not contact a Bail Bondsman for you, nor can they recommend one, you must make the arrangements yourself.
Helpful phone numbers:
- Hays County Jail/Bond Information: 512-393-7807 or 512-393-7690
- Hays County Jail Records: 512-393-7832
You may also reference the Bail Bond Info section of this web site for more information.
Hays County now allows you the convenience of paying with a credit card for individuals who are currently in custody and for class “C” fines only.
No other forms of payments will be accepted. If you have any questions contact the Jail Bonding Department at the numbers listed below for the bureau code and fine amount before processing a payment then call 1-866-549-1010 or visit www.certifiedpayments.net
Hays County Jail – Bonding Department:
A service charge will be assessed by Certified Payments
Defense Attorneys that wish to make inquiries regarding reasonable virtual access to their client(s) should refer to the link below:
Any request for information made by phone to the Hays County Jail will be redirected to email
Inmate Calls to their Attorneys
Hays County provides a free call option to attorneys for the benefit of their incarcerated clients. Only one business telephone number is authorized for the call list. Calls are limited to twenty minutes each, are free of charge and are not recorded. Requests to be placed on the free call list should be made to Lieutenant John Saenz by email at
Please attach a written request on letterhead, along with a copy/scan of your valid driver’s license and BAR card to the email.