Skip to main content

"My friend" was issued a bench warrant for DWI. Does he have anything to worry about if he moved to PA?

Rochester, NY |

Lets just say "My Friend" was arrested at a bad time, and was getting ready to move before the arrest. Since then i have moved to Pittsburgh (1 month between arrest and arraignment). "my friend" has no intention on moving back to NY. Should he be worried about getting extradited? Or am I good to go?

replace all "I's" with my friend**

+ Read More

Attorney answers 8


If you come in contact with law enforcement in PA, it is quite possible you will be arrested and held. The jurisdiction where the warrant is lodged may or may not come to get you.

I have been a criminal attorney in New York for almost 25 years. website: Phone #: 718-208-6094 email: This answer is only for informational purposes and is not meant as legal advice.


If he gets pulled over or into an accident or a cop sees him spit on the sidewalk and decides to issue a summons your friend is going to jail while PA contacts NY to see if they will extradite. They may not extradite for a misdemeanor but might for a felony.

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been doing criminal defense work for over 16 years. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012 and 2013. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has given me its highest rating - AV Preeminent - in the areas of Criminal Law, Personal Injury, and Litigation. According to Martindale-Hubbell”AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence." Fewer than 8% of attorneys achieve an AV Preeminent rating. I also have the highest ranking – “superb” – on Avvo. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


Your friend's best bet is to hire an attorney to help deal with this. While it is possible that your friend would not get picked up on the warrant and/or extradited, the opposite is also true. I have had many clients leave the state of CA with a pending case, to only be arrested and held on a warrant years later. There is never a good time for something like this to happen, but my advice is to hire a locally experienced DUI attorney to deal with it now. Good luck.

Jasen Nielsen


Yes, you should be worried about getting extradited. "Your friend" should hire an attorney to help defend against these charges.

Former Prosecutor and Family Court Law Clerk. I am available for phone consultations at (914) 368-2646. This answer is very general and is not intended to be specific legal advice and does not create any attorney/client relationship. Please consult an attorney with the specifics of your case to determine your best course of action in or out of court


Ignoring a warrant is never - never - a good idea. Answer the charges with the assistance of a qualified attorney. Retain one in your area as quickly as possible.

You cannot move away from trouble. Man up and address it.

Christopher I. Simser, Sr.
Anelli Xavier
Syracuse - Albany - Rochester - Buffalo


Have your friend consult with a NY criminal defense lawyer to handle the case and the open bench warrant.

If this answer is helpful, then please mark the helpful button. If this is the best answer, then please indicate it. Thanks. For further information you should see an attorney and discuss the matter completely. If you are in the New York City area, then you can reach me during normal business hours at 718 329 9500 or


He should be worried about this. Even if NY does not extradite, he can get detained and held until PA calls NY to ask whether or not they will extradite. This can happen every time he gets pulled over. He might end up spending a couple nights in jail until NY and PA communicate. Additionally, NY will suspend his driving privileges and NY and PA have reciprocity. Therefore, he will not be able to drive in PA.


Don't take it for granted that a District Attorney's Office in New York State won't extradite for a DWI charge. I can tell you as a former long-time Monroe County (Rochester) prosecutor during which time I served 4+ years as head of the DWI Bureau that my former office and many Upstate DA's Offices will extradite for a DWI. I agree with the previous posting that it is never a good idea to ignore a bench warrant. You'd be well served to retain a local, experienced criminal defense attorney who regularly represents clients charged with DWI to handle the case. The case is not going to go away.

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer