2937.221 Deposit of driver's license as bond.

(A) A person arrested without warrant for any violation listed in division (B) of this section, and having a current valid Ohio driver's or commercial driver's license, if the person has been notified of the possible consequences of the person's actions as required by division (C) of this section, may post bond by depositing the license with the arresting officer if the officer and person so choose, or with the local court having jurisdiction if the court and person so choose. The license may be used as bond only during the period for which it is valid.

When an arresting officer accepts the driver's or commercial driver's license as bond, the officer shall note the date, time, and place of the court appearance on "the violator's notice to appear," and the notice shall serve as a valid Ohio driver's or commercial driver's license until the date and time appearing thereon. The arresting officer immediately shall forward the license to the appropriate court.

When a local court accepts the license as bond or continues the case to another date and time, it shall provide the person with a card in a form approved by the registrar of motor vehicles setting forth the license number, name, address, the date and time of the court appearance, and a statement that the license is being held as bond. The card shall serve as a valid license until the date and time contained in the card.

The court may accept other bond at any time and return the license to the person. The court shall return the license to the person when judgment is satisfied, including, but not limited to, compliance with any court orders, unless a suspension or cancellation is part of the penalty imposed.

Neither "the violator's notice to appear" nor a court- granted card shall continue driving privileges beyond the expiration date of the license.

If the person arrested fails to appear in court at the date and time set by the court or fails to satisfy the judgment of the court, including, but not limited to, compliance with all court orders within the time allowed by the court, the court may declare the forfeiture of the person's license. Thirty days after the declaration of the forfeiture, the court shall forward the person's license to the registrar. The court also shall enter information relative to the forfeiture on a form approved and furnished by the registrar and send the form to the registrar. The registrar shall suspend the person's license and send written notification of the suspension to the person at the person's last known address. No valid driver's or commercial driver's license shall be granted to the person until the court having jurisdiction orders that the forfeiture be terminated. The court shall inform the registrar of the termination of the forfeiture by entering information relative to the termination on a form approved and furnished by the registrar and sending the form to the registrar. Upon the termination, the person shall pay to the bureau of motor vehicles a reinstatement fee of fifteen dollars to cover the costs of the bureau in administering this section. The registrar shall deposit the fees so paid into the state bureau of motor vehicles fund created by section 4501.25 of the Revised Code.

In addition, upon receipt from the court of the copy of the declaration of forfeiture, neither the registrar nor any deputy registrar shall accept any application for the registration or transfer of registration of any motor vehicle owned by or leased in the name of the person named in the declaration of forfeiture until the court having jurisdiction over the offense that led to the suspension issues an order terminating the forfeiture. However, for a motor vehicle leased in the name of a person named in a declaration of forfeiture, the registrar shall not implement the preceding sentence until the registrar adopts procedures for that implementation under section 4503.39 of the Revised Code. Upon receipt by the registrar of such an order, the registrar also shall take the measures necessary to permit the person to register a motor vehicle the person owns or leases or to transfer the registration of a motor vehicle the person owns or leases if the person later makes a proper application and otherwise is eligible to be issued or to transfer a motor vehicle registration.

(B) Division (A) of this section applies to persons arrested for violation of:

(1) Any of the provisions of Chapter 4511. or 4513. of the Revised Code, except sections 4511.19, 4511.20, 4511.251, and 4513.36 of the Revised Code;

(2) Any municipal ordinance substantially similar to a section included in division (B)(1) of this section;

(3) Any bylaw, rule, or regulation of the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission substantially similar to a section included in division (B)(1) of this section.

Division (A) of this section does not apply to those persons issued a citation for the commission of a minor misdemeanor under section 2935.26 of the Revised Code.

(C) No license shall be accepted as bond by an arresting officer or by a court under this section until the officer or court has notified the person that, if the person deposits the license with the officer or court and either does not appear on the date and at the time set by the officer or the court, if the court sets a time, or does not satisfy any judgment rendered, including, but not limited to, compliance with all court orders, the license will be suspended, and the person will not be eligible for reissuance of the license or issuance of a new license, or the issuance of a certificate of registration for a motor vehicle owned or leased by the person until the person appears and complies with any order issued by the court. The person also is subject to any criminal penalties that may apply to the person.

(D) The registrar shall not restore the person's driving or vehicle registration privileges until the person pays the reinstatement fee as provided in this section.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004; 09-16-2004