If I have a bench warrant out in Philadelphia from June 2009, can they still arrest me? The charges are "inactive".

Asked almost 4 years ago - Lansdowne, PA

I have also been told that they only have 12 months to pick me up - that is the statute of limitations. Is this true?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Leo Michael Mulvihill Jr.

    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . You need specific legal advice for this situation that cannot be adequately addressed on a public message board.

    If you have a BW out in Philadelphia, you may be in for a heap of trouble if you're pulled over or stopped by the police for any other matter.

    See a criminal defense attorney immediately.

    Good luck.

    Leo M. Mulvihill, Jr.
    Attorney and Counselor at Law
    2424 E York Street, Suite 316
    Philadelphia, PA 19125

    Note: This answer is only for educational purposes. I am not your lawyer until we have a written representation... more
  2. David Everett Cook

    Contributor Level 12

    Answered . Yes, you can still be arrested. As mentioned, the statute of limitations does not apply once the charges have been filed. Speedy trial rules also generally do not apply (but there are exceptions). Finally, the charges are listed as inactive because the case is not progressing through the system as a result of the bench warrant. Once you are picked up on the bench warrant, the case will become active again.

    With any warrant, it is best to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to advise you on how to properly deal with the circumstances of your particular case. It is generally better to appear before the Court voluntarily than if you are taken into custody during a traffic stop or some other time. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you navigate this particular dilema.

  3. John M. Kaman


    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . It is a common misconception that there is a statute of limitations on warrants. Not so. They never die. The only way to get rid of them is to clear up the situation that caused the warrant to get issued. Don't wait until you get arrested.

Related Topics

Traffic stops

In a traffic stop or pull over, the officer stops you in your vehicle. Traffic stops are supposed to be based on reasonable suspicion that you violated the law.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

29,681 answers this week

3,411 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

29,681 answers this week

3,411 attorneys answering