Can I resolve a warrant in another state without traveling to that state? 41 Answers as of May 29, 2013

I have a warrant in a state I've never been to for posession of marijuana. I have never been to IA; I live in GA. I was told during a traffic stop that I have a warrant. I have a job opportunity that requires me to have no open cases (it hasn't been a problem so I haven't dealt with it and it's been about 2 years). I suspect it was a former roommate's boyfriend. (They were from Indiana and moved back). I need to resolve this immediately, but all the calls I've made they say "we can't give you any information over the phone because we can't prove your identity over the phone." I am willing to drive and turn myself in, if it would take only a week or so to get it resolved (only have 1 month before job). My other questions are 1) Can it be resolved through an attorney and me not have to travel? 2: Roughly how much would that attorney be? 3: If I do turn myself in, can I get a court date very soon, instead of few months? I am crunched for time, and cant be out of town that long? 4: Is there any other way to resolve this quickly?

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Austin Hirschhorn, P.C.
Austin Hirschhorn, P.C. | Austin Hirschhorn
Your starting point should be to contact a criminal attorney in Indiana to see if he or she can resolve what sounds like an identity theft situation without you having to appear in that state. If this can be done, you should discuss the fee arrangement with whoever you contact. If you have to appear in Indiana, I would recommend that you contact the authorities that have the warrant and arrange to meet with them and see If you are able to persuade them that you are not the person they should be looking for and have the warrant against you withdrawn or quashed. If you are not successful you will have to hire an Indiana criminal attorney to represent you. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/21/2012
Law office of Robert D. Scott | Robert Scott
No.
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Replied: 5/24/2013
Law Office of Richard Southard
Law Office of Richard Southard | Richard C Southard
You will need to either appear in that state or hire an attorney to appear on your behalf. Every attorney has different fee structures. Contact a local attorney and seek their help in resolving this.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 8/14/2012
Law Office of Richard Williams
Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
I would consider hiring an attorney in the county where the warrant is located. The person booked into the jail should have been photographed. You have your photograph through your driver's license that should be easily obtained by the district attorney. I would think that once you could prove you were not that person the charges against you would be dropped, without you having to travel to that state.
Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 8/14/2012
Law Office of Phillip Weiser
Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
You should contact an attorney for his fees and advice on how to resolve the warrant against you in the state or city where the warrant was filed.
Answer Applies to: Kansas
Replied: 8/14/2012
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    Get an attorney in the town where this happened. They can find out such things as whether the person went to jail when arrested. If so there may be a booking photo.

    He can also check with the officer who made the arrest. If the officer sees a photo of you they may say that it is not you. You would still have to go there and show that you are you but if it is arranged ahead of time and the officer is there at the court the matter may be able to be taken care of quickly.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Office of Michael E. Dailey
    Law Office of Michael E. Dailey | Michael E. Dailey
    Answers as follows:
    1. a very real possibility that this could take care of the problem.
    2. you will need to make the calls to the individual attorneys to get a good determination of cost. It may vary on how each would proceed on the matter.
    3. you may get a initial court date fairly soon as in days but there is certainly no guarantee the case will be resolved at that time. A number of court dates may come and go before a trial date is reached which would get the final resolution if it can't be cleared up before then.
    4. this depends on the identifiers on record for the person charged. If it is based on prints or photo you may have other options but until you have someone on the case, you may not be able to find out what the identifiers are.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Douglas M. Philpott, P.C. | Peter J. Philpott
    Some courts allow you to plead guilty by mail, however its usually for someone who is incarcerated.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    The Woods Law Firm
    The Woods Law Firm | F.W. Woods Jr.
    Yes you should hire an attorney in that state to handle the case. The attorney may charge whatever they think the case is worth based on time and you will probably have to come to the final hearing. There is no way to resolve it quickly but the attorney can expedite things quite a bit.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Office of Christopher G Humphrey PC | Christopher G Humphrey
    Depends on the State, you have to call the state of origin and see if you can post a bond instead of appearing. Some states like Wyoming will require your arrest.
    Answer Applies to: Wyoming
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    The wheels of justice turn slowly at times, so be aware there are no such things as speedy resolutions. I would suggest hiring an attorney from the county in which the warrant is pending, he may be able to resolve the matter in your absence, however, I doubt anything can be done without your presence.

    Talk to counsel about your options. As for the cost, figuring what an Iowa attorney would be charge would be a wild guess, so I will not even venture one.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    Call me and let me know what town in Indiana as I probably know a good criminal lawyer there. I was on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) so I know good attorneys all over the place.

    I don't know Indiana law so I can't advise you. But what you are saying doesn't make sense. Did the guy have your license and look like you? How would the MJ be attributed to you? I don't think you are giving me enough info.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Goncalves Law Office | Humberta Goncalves-Babbitt
    You need to contact an attorney in IA for this.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Herschel Bullen
    Herschel Bullen | Herschel Bullen
    I could only say that I have been able to resolve far more serious cases on warrant without the person coming to Utah, which is where I practice.

    I suggest that you find a criminal lawyer in the county out of which the warrant is issued. You can find good defense lawyers through the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and presumably Iowa has a State organization of criminal defense lawyers.

    Also the Iowa Bar Association may have a lawyer referral service. And then there's always the internet. But yes I recommend you get a lawyer to resolve this.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Office of Gregory Crain | Gregory Crain
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 5/29/2013
    Palumbo and Kosofsky
    Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
    No.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/29/2013
    Mace J. Yampolsky, LTD
    Mace J. Yampolsky, LTD | Mace Yampolsky
    You need to call an attorney in Iowa for help. Do not try and do this yourself.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    You should retain an attorney to contact the prosecutor and police. The lawyer may be able to waive your appearance and have the case dismissed or you will have to surrender on the warrant.

    You should Google lawyers in the area where the warrant is and get an estimate on the fee. Ask for a "flat rate fee" so that you know the total fee and can compare the lawyers. Make sure the lawyer has an office near the court and that he has 20 years or more experience in criminal law.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    It may be best if you seek the help of an attorney in the area where the warrant is. The attorney could research the issue and could provide information as to your residence and lack of being in that jurisdiction.

    It is possible that the attorney could work this out without you having to travel. An attorney would usually charge an hourly rate for this type of work. You would have to consult with the attorney as to what you could expect to be charged.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    If you hire an attorney most courts in California with allow an out of state defendant to appear on a misdemeanor warrant without that defendant present.

    There are some papers that would need to be drafted by your attorney and for you to sign with a notary. Most warrant cases will be heard the same day that a person appears at the court to turn himself in.

    All the cases that I have handled like this have settled within a week or so if not on the same day. The ones that took over a day were ones that required notarized plead and/or setup for community service in the defendant's state.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    James M. Osak, P.C.
    James M. Osak, P.C. | James M. Osak
    You'll have to contact IA to see why there's a warrant out for you. You can call/write the prosecutor's office and ask them to explain. If they get "weird" with you threaten them with a federal lawsuit or two. You'll probably going to have to retain a local (IA) attorney to negotiate with those guys. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Yes. Most states allow attorneys to appear without the client if it is a misdemeanor.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    You should obtain an attorney able to practice in the jurisdiction involved. That attorney will determine whether he/she can deal with the matter without your appearance. The sooner you get started, the sooner the matter can be resolved. No one can tell you whether you will ultimately be required to appear in the warrant state. You will not find out until you take some initiative.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    Salladay Law Office | Lance Salladay
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 5/29/2013
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    You will need to appear in court to resolve the warrant. I recommend that you take an attorney with you. so, if you are arrested, the attorney can begin on making sure you get released. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    The Rogers Law Firm
    The Rogers Law Firm | Andrea Storey Rogers
    Hire a criminal defense attorney located in the city or county where you were charged with possession of marijuana. Your attorney can get the warrant lifted and represent you in court to get the charge reduced to a lesser offense.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/14/2012
    T.K. Byrne | Timothy K. Byrne
    You need to contact a competant attorney for the jurisdiction the warrant was issued. He or she can advise you of the local law and procedure.
    Answer Applies to: Mississippi
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law | Mark Thiessen
    Call a bail bonds man in that county where you have a warrant. As for what some cop told you, I'd take that with a grain of salt. Maybe you can ask some local cop to run you nationally.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    I am not licensed to practice in Iowa; however, the criminal laws for each state are similar. Most warrants require a personal appearance by the defendant. My advice to you is to retain the services of an attorney in the county or city where the crime was alleged to have occurred. That attorney can then, through a Notice Of Appearance, gain access to the court files, and discover documents, and see exactly what is going on. The attorney can then begin dialogue with the prosecutor and see if there is a possible resolution. Your attorney can then advise you accordingly.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Law Offices of Mark L. Smith
    Law Offices of Mark L. Smith | Mark L. Smith
    No the warrant was issued for a failure to appear - you must appear.When you do appear provide the court with your name date of birth and social security number. If all this information was given to the police at the time of the arrest the numbers should not match. Then the court should realize the warrant was issued for the wrong person.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Gutin and Wolverton
    Gutin and Wolverton | Harley Gutin
    Most Courts will allow a plea in absentia (in your absence) to a Misdemeanor charge. So if the State where you are charged (warrant was issued) is charging you with a Misdemeanor Possession of Cannabis then it would be in your best interest to contact a lawyer in that State near the courthouse to handle the case.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    Probably not. However, check with attorneys in that state to see if they can appear without you being present in court. CA allows that in misdemeanor cases, but not in felonies.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Law Office of Russell A. Warren
    Law Office of Russell A. Warren | Russell A. Warren
    Your best bet is to contact an attorney in the County / City that that charge appears in. They can give you a better idea of how the individual court operates in that area. Call information and ask for the Iowa Bar Association. Most Bar Associations havea "Lawyer Referral Service" and they should be able to refer you to a Traffic / Criminal Attorney in the specific county that you are looking for.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Steven Alpers | Steven Alpers
    You would have to contact a lawyer in Iowa to answer this question. If you drive there I would expect a simple possession to be resolved quickly, but not knowing the facts and evidence they have against you I can't be sure. If you have a common name that may explain the problem.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Healan Law Offices
    Healan Law Offices | William D. Healan, III
    You need to hire a lawyer in the jurisdiction where the warrant is. That lawyer will be able to help you figure out what to do.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Rhoades & Miller, LLP
    Rhoades & Miller, LLP | M. Jason Rhoades
    I would certainly try to resolve things without going to IA, if possible. If I were in your position, I would hire a GA attorney to work with an IA attorney to try and get things worked out, so you could hopefully get things worked out without having to leave GA.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Law Office of Ronald G. Draper | Ronald G. Draper
    It's possible a local lawyer in that other state could resolve the matter without your personal appearance. However, you still may need to personally appear to confirm through processing your identity was not the same person who was initially arrested.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Myles Hahn III Attorney at Law | Myles Hahn III
    You must decide on the correct course of action. One possibility is to hire an attorney who works in that local area to go to the court building and check out the warrant. You would have to pay something, but it might cost less than travelling there. If you think back again and DO remember going to Iowa, then you may need to go there anyway to take care of the matter. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Benjamin D Gordon, Attorney at Law
    Benjamin D Gordon, Attorney at Law | Benjamin D Gordon
    Contact an attorney in the state where the warrant was issued as soon as possible, it is likely that they can streamline the process, and may be possible that you will not need to travel to that state.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/13/2012
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