What is a bond for good behavior?
In the state of Georgia, you can apply for a bond for good behavior in the criminal division of magistrate court if a crime has been committed or is immediately threatened. The judge may issue a bond for good behavior if s/he believes the safety, peace or property of another person in the county is in danger of being injured or disturbed. Unlike a protective order, a bond for good behavior can mean that both parties (you and the abuser) have to follow the terms of the bond that are set (such as no contact). In some counties, a police report is required.1
A bond for good behavior requires the abuser (defendant) to post bond by giving money or property to the court to hold. The abuser will lose this money or property if s/he violates the judge’s order or commits a crime against you.2 The court may also find the abuser in contempt of court for violating an order.3
Bonds for good behavior can arise in domestic abuse situations or other situation (such as disputes between neighbors). They can be useful if you need some protection from the court for a short period of time. A bond for good behavior will last for a certain term (such as 6 months) but may be extended by the superior or state court for additional 60-day periods.4 If you have questions, you may want to talk to a lawyer. Go to our GA Finding a Lawyer page for legal referrals.
1 O.C.G.A. § 17-6-90; see, for example, Effingham County’s website
2 O.C.G.A. § 17-6-92
3 O.C.G.A. § 17-6-94
4 O.C.G.A. § 17-6-93; see, for example, Effingham County’s website