Crypto Bail Funds – Why Did They Become so Popular

Data & Research / 02.11.2020

There are several uses of cryptocurrencies being discovered every day. One of the most recent uses of cryptocurrencies is its application in bail payments. Bail is written consent from the court, allowing an individual charged with a criminal offense to be out of jail as they await their trial or the case’s decision. 

In determining bail cases, the judge examines different factors to decide the severity of the case, including if the accused already has other charges at the time of the arrest. Therefore, for accused persons, bail is the only option for securing their freedom. This article will look at the recent rise in bail payments in the U.S. and the factors contributing to it. 

Bail Funds

Bail is set by a judge and must be paid for the individual accused to secure their freedom while awaiting trial. However, not everyone can readily pay the bail, primarily low-income earners. 

The Bail Project’s research indicates that failure to pay bail will result in the accused person spending a night in prison and have significant implications on the accused’s side. An individual can easily lose a job, custody of their children, or even a home. 

Awaiting trial in jail also improves a detainee’s chances of going to prison, as established by a report on cash bail by the Brennan Center for Justice. 

To cater to low-income earners’ needs, organizations such as the Bail Project, the Chicago Community Bond Fund, and the Nashville Community Bail Fund offer bail payments to help those who can’t afford it.

These organizations crowdsource funds that are then used to pay bail for accused persons to get out of jail as they await trial. Bail has a significant effect on the fight for social issues, civil rights, and even elections.

Bail has a negative consequence on elections as it curbs an individual’s ability to vote because they are held in detention. Additionally, if an accused person held in custody pleads guilty to serious allegations such as a felony, their voting rights can be restrained for years.  

Cryptocurrency Adoption in Bail Funds

In recent years, particularly in 2020, there has been a significant increase in bail payment using cryptocurrencies. The increased cryptocurrency donations have primarily influenced bail payments using cryptocurrencies.

Since 2018, there have been enormous crypto donations. 

For instance:

  • Pineapple Fund donated 5,057 bitcoin ($ 55 million at the time) to 60 charities.
  • GiveDirectly donated 274.3 BTC ($2.1) million to the Institute of Justice.
  • Ripple Co-Founder donated $25 Million in XRP to San Francisco State University. 

In the U.S., crypto bail funds are being spearheaded by several crypto payment processors, including The Giving Block, the Bail Project, the Chicago Community Bond Fund, and the Nashville Community Bail Funds. 

These platforms accept crypto bail payments involving several cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin (BTC), basic attention token (BAT), and ether (ETH). 

What Has Made Crypto Bail Funds Popular?

The recent rise in crypto bail funds in the U.S. is thought to be contributed mainly by the increase in civil violence and protests across the U.S. 

There has been a rise in a civil action against police violence in the U.S protesting for equality and a stop to racial discrimination. The Black Lives matter streets protest over the police killings of George Floyd, and Breonna Taylor saw the arrest of numerous protestors. 

As the number of arrested protestors increased, The Giving Block recorded an increase in individuals interested in using the infrastructure to process cryptocurrency payments. 

The Giving Block is among the few organization’s member bail funds in crypto. Apart from the Giving Block, some notable organizations that accept crypto bail funds include the Richmond Bail Fund, Chicago Community Bond Fund, and the Nashville Community Bail Fund.  

Benefits of Crypto Bail Funds

There are several benefits of bail funds organizations accepting donations using cryptocurrencies. Some of the most notable benefits include: 

  • Offset Economic Loss 

Bail funds organizations accepting donations in crypto counterbalances economic loss as they can diversify their revenue and donations stream. 

  • Enhances Bail Fund Donations 

By accepting cryptocurrency bail donations, bail fund organizations can enhance their total funds’ donations. This is because crypto donations target a new segment of donors constituted by the growing adoption of cryptocurrencies. For instance, Bitcoin appeals to a younger demographic; hence, they are more likely to donate. 

  • Seamless Way for International Donors 

Through crypto donations, international donors can contribute easily to the funds. For instance, The Giving Block’s Crypto for Black Lives campaign formed to raise money for civil organizations, including bail funds, received considerable donations from international donors due to the ease of donations using cryptocurrencies. 

  • Crypto Donations are not taxed. 

An essential aspect of crypto donations that makes it ideal for bail fund organizations is that they are not taxed. Cryptocurrency donations to nonprofit organizations are treated like donations of stock thus are not subjected to taxation. Therefore, bail fund organizations do not need to pay capital gain taxes in cases of crypto adoption. 

Conclusion

Street protests and civil action against police violence witnessed in the U.S. during the summer lead to numerous arrested prosecutors seeking bail. As such, there was an increase in bail fund donations to secure the release of protectors. 

Several bail fund organizations have started accepting crypto donations. This is a move that has seen a rapid rise in bail fund donations. Bail funds organizations should step up and accept crypto bail fund donations. It comes with plenty of benefits, such as enhancing the stream of revenue and donations and evading hefty taxes.  

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Wayne is a Blockchain enthusiast and expert in crypto trading. Currently, he covers trendy issues on digital currencies.