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What Happens When you Fail to Appear in Court

Friday, February 12, 2016
What Happens When you Fail to Appear in Court

While the justice system may appear convoluted and bloated at times, the fact is the process follows a structured and predictable pattern, regardless of the category and severity of the charge. If you are scheduled to appear in court by don’t show up, failure to appear can result in a number of possible consequences. Here are a few:

Bench Warrant

If you fail to appear for a court hearing, the judge may issue a bench warrant for your arrest. Depending on the circumstances, law enforcement may actively seek you out to arrest you as a result of the bench warrant. A bench warrant gives them the right to take you into custody at any time as a result of your failure to appear.

Imposition of Bail

If you were released following your arrest without having to post bail, failure to appear in court may signal to the judge that you are a flight risk. As a result, a bail or bond may be imposed that will require you to secure a loan through a bond company or use property – such as a home of vehicle – as collateral to assure that you do not miss any future court appearances.

Additional Charges

In many states, failure to appear in court is a misdemeanor in itself. This means that you could be facing additional charges separate from those you were originally facing. In some cases, failure to appear is considered contempt of court, which can also result in fines and/or jail time.

If charged with a crime, it is imperative that you work with someone who understands the process and can assist in making sure that things moves smoothly. Contact us to learn how we can help you handle an arrest warrant or assist you during hearings regarding failure to appear.