I missed my court date due to me moving out of state and being in school, i never got the notice to appear in court

Asked over 1 year ago - Waycross, GA

i have a bench warrant issued and i have a second notice to appear, i plan to go this time but i dont want to get arrested in court ...what do i do?

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Bert W. Cohen


    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Hire a lawyer who practices in the court you are in. He or she has the credibility with the court that you lack to possibly call back the warrant (avoid your going to jail). A lawyer can negotiate with the prosecutor and judge in a way that you simply cannot. Apparently you also have a criminal case pending against you. The lawyer you hire to help you with the bench warrant will be expected by the court to represent you for that as well.

  2. Noah Howard Pines


    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Going to court without a lawyer when you already have a warrant is a sure way to get arrested.

  3. Allen Rust Knox

    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Once you have retained the lawyer that Mr. Cohen told you to get, have him file a motion to lift the bench warrant. Your excuse is not necessarily a good one, but the judge may give you a second chance.

  4. Kathleen Willcox Williams

    Contributor Level 6


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . As the other lawyers have said, hiring an experienced criminal defense lawyer is probably your best bet. It will be helpful to that lawyer if you gather any documentation you can (i.e. evidence of enrollment in school) to support the story of why you missed court, but please keep in mind that many judges and prosecutors take the position that it is the accused's responsibility to keep the court updated with changing contact information, not the other way around. You are right to take this seriously, and I encourage you to approach this wrinkle in the defense of your case with humility, taking responsibility for having missed the earlier date. "But it really wasn't my fault" never plays as well as "it was a genuine and understandable mistake." It is probably worth pointing out that, had you hired a lawyer earlier in the process of your case, this probably would nit have happened. One of the things I ask clients to do is to keep contact information updated, so that my office can ensure clerks of court, Sheriff's offices and prosecutors' offices have updated information. Please get an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help present your case in the best light, to help you navigate the process, and to help you identify any possible defenses there may be to your charges. This is a big deal, and you are right to treat it like a big deal.

    Best wishes, Kathleen Willcox Williams Attorney at Law 512 G Street Brunswick, Georgia 31520 (912) 275-... more
  5. Eric J Trabin

    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Hire a lawyer. The lawyer can file a motion to request the court to set the warrant aside. Generally, if a person is trying to hide from a court, they don't hire a lawyer to engage the case. Judges are much more accommodating when a defendant voluntarily presents themselves to the court.

    This is not to be considered legal advice nor does an attorney-client relationship exist.

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