i went to court but never paid for the fines, it has been more than 7 years and now i have a bench warrant! i can't afford a lawyer. How can i get rid of my bench warrant with out going to jail?
First of all, it depends on what the underlying criminal conviction was. If you were convicted of a felony and had fines to pay, you're going to want to go to the public defender's office wherever you were convicted and talk to them about it. If it was just a simple misdemeanor, like a DUI, you could consider getting the money for ALL of the fine together, then going to the courthouse and asking to be added on calendar by the clerk of court, making it clear you are READY TO PAY IMMEDIATELY. If it was just a simple misdemeanor and you can pay the whole fine, you'll probably-- that's PROBABLY, no guarantees, no promises-- be able to avoid going into custody, get the bench warrant cleared, and be on your way. If it was a felony, I wouldn't touch it without a lawyer, which is why I say go to the Public Defender's office.