Finding out that you have an arrest warrant can be unnerving, to say the least. It can be difficult to know exactly how to handle the situation, especially if it’s your first time to deal with a problem of this nature. While it can be a stressful experience, having a warrant doesn’t necessarily mean jail time. Knowing your options and the procedure can help you feel more in control and help you know what to expect.
Can You Pay a Warrant and Not go to Jail?
While warrants generally end in arrest, they don’t always have to. Bench warrants and traffic warrants can often be taken care of without ever going to jail through a process called walk-through bonding. In this process, your bondsman will begin the process of your bond, you will be processed, and then set free under the care of your bondsman and cosigner. However, many warrants, such as capias warrants, felony warrants, and even some misdemeanor warrants will have to be heard by the judge before release can occur. Many of these charges have variable bonds or no bond at all in which case the entire period will have to be served.
Do Warrants Expire?
Unfortunately, once you have an arrest warrant, it will be there until you take care of it. Warrants do not expire or go away, but can rack up hefty fines and more jail time if not taken care of. In fact, some warrants can accrue felony charges like evading arrest and tampering with an investigation when not addressed. It’s crucial that when you find out that you have a warrant, you begin the process of rectifying the situation as soon as possible.
Can You Have a Warrant Without Knowing?
While it’s common practice for courts to send a notice by mail, you do not have to know about your warrant to have one. Therefore, it’s important to stay abreast of your legal situation. You can be arrested at any time for any warrant, even if you were unaware. The court system is only obligated to send one notice to your listed permanent address before issuing the warrant. So checking your warrant status regularly is recommended.
How Can I Check if I Have a Warrant?
Many court systems now have programs and websites that can tell you if you have a warrant in the specified area. Warrant check and warrant lookup services are able to provide all the information you need to begin solving the problem including your charges, date filed, case number, and any other pertinent information.
There are multiple types of warrants, each with its own classification and requirements. Your warrant type will have a drastic effect on what will be required of you. Some warrants are easily taken care of with the payment of a fine while others require jail time. It’s important to discuss the details of your charge with a legal professional in order to decide on the best course of action.
- Bench Warrants: These warrants are issued by a judge when a defendant fails to comply with the rules of the court. In most cases, these are issued for failure to show up at your first court date.
- Misdemeanor Warrants: As the most common type of warrant issued, these can cover charges from minor charges like traffic violations and probation violations to theft and drug charges. While some of these charges have a set bond, many will need to be heard by a judge in order to set the bond amount.
- Capias Warrants: These warrants are issued when a defendant has failed to hold up their end of the deal that was made in court or for probation violations. Capias warrants cannot be bonded and must be served in full with no exceptions.
- Felony Warrants: Often referred to as the most severe of the warrant types, these charges almost always have to be heard by a judge before a bond is set. Because of the severity of a felony crime, these warrants also almost always come with jail time.
How Do You Fight a Warrant?
Unfortunately, the best way to fight a warrant is to abide by the requirements set forth. If you are summoned to appear in court, you must still do so. But, this will give you the opportunity to voice your concerns to the judge.
No matter what type of warrant you have, it’s important to follow the instructions in order to get the situation resolved. Warrants don’t go away and aren’t dissolvable. They can also increase in severity over time. When you have a warrant for your arrest, call the Ammediate Bail Bonds team for the bonding service and arrest warrant information you need in the Cocoa and Palm Bay, FL area. We can help you get and stay on the right track to eliminating your legal trouble. Call us today at (321) 631-2663.