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RCW 10.19.160 is a crucial statute in Washington State’s legal framework, particularly concerning bail bonds and the role of sureties. This law provides a legal mechanism for sureties to surrender a defendant back into custody. Understanding its intricacies is essential for individuals involved in the bail bond process, legal professionals, and those interested in criminal justice.

Key Provisions of RCW 10.19.160

Surrender of Defendant by Surety

The statute permits a surety (often a bail bond agent) to return a defendant to custody in a criminal case. This action is applicable under the circumstances where the defendant is out on a bond provided by the surety.

Conditions for Surrender

For the surrender to be valid, it must be accompanied by:

  1. Notice of Forfeiture: This is a formal declaration indicating that the defendant is at risk of not complying with the bail conditions.
  2. Notarized Affidavit: The affidavit should clearly state the reasons for surrendering the defendant. These reasons could range from violating bail conditions to concerns about the defendant failing to appear in court.

Process of Surrender

The surrender must be made to the county or city jail that is associated with the jurisdiction which issued the warrant and resulted in bail. This ensures that the process is streamlined and follows the legal protocols of the respective jurisdiction.

Post-Surrender Procedure

Upon surrender, the defendant must be held in custody until the next judicial day. Alternatively, they can be released if another bond is posted. This clause ensures that the defendant’s rights are protected while also maintaining the integrity of the bail system.

Implications and Importance

For Sureties

Sureties must understand the legal implications and responsibilities when posting a bond. RCW 10.19.160 offers a lawful path for sureties to act if they believe the defendant might not adhere to the bail conditions.

For Defendants

Defendants need to be aware that violating bail conditions can lead to their surrender back into custody. This law underscores the importance of complying with all conditions set forth in the bail agreement.

This statute plays a vital role in balancing the rights of the defendants with the interests of the public and the legal system. It ensures that defendants can secure temporary release while providing a mechanism to safeguard against potential risks to public safety and court proceedings.


RCW 10.19.160 is a critical component of Washington State’s legal system regarding bail bonds. It outlines a clear process for sureties to surrender a defendant back to custody, ensuring that the bail system functions effectively while respecting the rights of all parties involved. Understanding this law is essential for anyone engaged in the bail bond process or interested in criminal justice in Washington State.

You can read the text of RCE 10.19.160 here:

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About Blanford Law:

We are no-nonsense, relentless, fair, and honest. We are great listeners instead of fast talkers, that is just who we are. More than 20 years ago, Ken began practicing law with a deeply-seeded belief that every person has the right to the best legal representation available. He built his law firm on that belief. Another belief that he strongly adheres to is his fundamental belief that clients deserve respect, with no assumptions or preconceived notions.  If you or someone you know is accused of a crime or injured as a result of the negligence of another, please have them call us at 253-720-9304 or email us