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The Pennsylvania Code website reflects the Pennsylvania Code changes effective through 53 Pa.B. 6142 (September 30, 2023).

234 Pa. Code Rule 520. Bail Before Verdict.

PART C. Bail

Rule 520. Bail Before Verdict.

 (A)  Bail before verdict shall be set in all cases as permitted by law. Whenever bail is refused, the bail authority shall state in writing or on the record the reasons for that determination.

 (B)  A defendant may be admitted to bail on any day and at any time.


   Article I, §  14 of the Pennsylvania Constitution was amended in 1998 to read: ‘‘All prisoners shall be bailable by sufficient sureties, unless for capital offenses or for offenses for which the maximum sentence is life imprisonment or unless no condition or combination of conditions other than imprisonment will reasonably assure the safety of any person and the community when the proof is evident or presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in case of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.’’

   For the minor judiciary’s authority to set bail, see the Judicial Code, 42 Pa.C.S. § §  1123(a)(5), 1143(a)(1), and 1515(a)(4).

   See Pa.R.J.C.P. 396, which provides that, at the conclusion of a transfer hearing, the juvenile court judge is to determine bail pursuant to these bail rules for a juvenile whose case is ordered transferred to criminal proceedings.

   See Commonwealth v. Truesdale, 449 Pa. 325, 296 A.2d 829 (1972), concerning the bail authority’s discretion to refuse bail under paragraph (A).

   Under paragraph (A), whenever the bail authority is a judicial officer in a court not of record, that officer must set forth in writing his or her reasons for refusing bail, and the written reasons must be included with the docket transcript.

   Rule 117(C) requires the president judge to ensure coverage is provided to satisfy the requirements of paragraph (B).

   Official Note

   Former Rule 4001 adopted July 23, 1973, effective 60 days hence, replacing prior Rule 4002; amended January 28, 1983, effective July 1, 1983; Comment revised September 23, 1985, effective January 1, 1986; rescinded September 13, 1995, effective January 1, 1996, and replaced by present Rule 4001. Present Rule 4001 adopted September 13, 1995, effective January 1, 1996. The January 1, 1996 effective dates extended to April 1, 1996; the April 1, 1996 effective dates extended to July 1, 1996; Comment revised September 3, 1999, effective immediately; renumbered Rule 520 and Comment revised March 1, 2000, effective April 1, 2001; Comment revised April 1, 2005, effective October 1, 2005; Comment revised June 30, 2005, effective August 1, 2006.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:

   Final Report explaining the provisions of the new rule published with the Court’s Order at 25 Pa.B. 4116 (September 30, 1995).

   Final Report explaining the September 3, 1999 Comment revision concerning the 1998 constitutional amendment providing for preventive detention published with the Court’s Order at 29 Pa.B. 4862 (September 18, 1999).

   Final Report explaining the March 1, 2000 reorganization and renumbering of the rules published with the Court’s Order at 30 Pa.B. 1478 (March 18, 2000).

   Final Report explaining the April 1, 2005 Comment revision concerning Rules of Juvenile Court Procedure published with the Court’s Order at 35 Pa.B. 2213 (April 16, 2005).

   Final Report explaining the June 30, 2005 revision of the Comment adding a cross-reference to Rule 117(C) published with the Court’s Order at 35 Pa.B. 3911 (July 16, 2005).


   The provisions of this Rule 520 amended April 1, 2005, effective October 1, 2005, 35 Pa.B. 2210; amended June 30, 2005, effective August 1, 2006, 35 Pa.B. 3901. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (310540) to (310541).

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