What do I do if I have a warrent out for my arrest? 14 Answers as of May 30, 2013

I was issued a misdemeanor fine for the possesion of a small amount of marijuana. I failed to appear in court because I am a full time student and work. If there is a warrant out for my arrest, what is the best way to make it go away? Do i turn myself in? To who? What do i say?

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Law Office of Brian K. Wanerman
Law Office of Brian K. Wanerman | Brian K. Wanerman
It sounds like there may not be a warrant yet. Put yourself on calendar, show up, apologize to court for your earlier failure to appear and ask that any outstanding warrant be recalled. Consult an attorney first.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/23/2012
Law Offices of James A Bates
Law Offices of James A Bates | James A Bates
Do not wait to be arrested. Go to court with an attorney. Since the charge is small, the judge might give you a break on the failure to appear but it depends on his or her style and mood.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/17/2012
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
It depends on the local practice of the court if you can merely calendar it with the clerk and ask the court to withdraw the warrant. Some courts do it only through an attorney and others require you to turn yourself in at the jail. I would contact either an attorney or the court clerk for specific advice on your situation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/17/2012
Law Offices of Kenrick Young
Law Offices of Kenrick Young | Nicholas Lazzarini
Most county courts hear misdemeanors arraignments at a certain time each day. You can call the courthouse and ask when you can show up to be arraigned. There may be a bench warrant out for the original charge and also a failure to appear. If you are stopped for any other purpose, you may be arrested on the spot. You should consult an attorney immediately and schedule a time for your arraignment to avoid complications.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/17/2012
Grant & Grant
Grant & Grant | Richard L. Grant, Esq.
Possession of les than an ounce of marijuana is now an infraction, like a traffic ticket. Need to check if you were charged with an Infraction or Misdemeanor. May not be a warrant for Infraction, but most likely a warrant for misdemeanor. If warrant outstanding, then you need to immediately hire an experienced criminal attorney.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/17/2012
    Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
    Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
    You can often check on-line to find if there is an outstanding warrant. Otherwise, an attorney can call and I find out for you easily - any attorney should be willing to do this for free. On a misdemeanor, an attorney may appear for you to have the warrant recalled and then the case will proceed from where it left off. If you cannot afford an attorney, you need to go yourself first thing in the morning and ask to have the case added on to the calendar for that day. Then you can request the Public Defender or tell the judge yourself why you failed to appear. There is always the slightest risk that you could be remanded to jail but this is unlikely on a petty theft charge.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    Law Office of Jared C. Winter
    Law Office of Jared C. Winter | Jared C. Winter
    You can turn yourself in at any police station. They will most likely serve you with a notice to appear with a new court date. Technically, it's possible that they could take you into custody, but I think the chances of that happening on a marijuana case are very low. If you want to be sure to not go into custody, you should contact a bail bondsman first.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    Go away? Turning yourself into the police station will simply get you arrested, jailed and transported to the court[s] in cuffs and an orange jump suit. To properly handle warrants, you must turn yourself into the issuing court, with or without an attorney, and try to negotiate a recall of the warrant[s] and a plea bargain on the new Failure to Appear charge. You'll try to negotiate bail reduction or OR release. You'll try to negotiate a plea bargain or take to trial the outstanding charges that caused the warrant. Turning yourself in voluntarily will result in a better outcome than being brought in cuffs to court after arrest on the warrant. On misdemeanors and infractions, the attorney can appear in court without the defendant being present, and any plea bargain deal could be handled by notarized paperwork. While this isn't a 'capital case', you face potential jail and fines, so handle it right. Effective plea-bargaining, using whatever legal defenses, facts and sympathies there may be, could possibly keep you out of jail, or at least dramatically reduce it. Unless you're competent to effectively represent yourself in court against a professional prosecutor trying to put you in jail, most people hire an attorney who can.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    The Law Office of Stephanie M. Arrache
    The Law Office of Stephanie M. Arrache | Stephanie Arrache
    Hire an attorney who can represent you and have the warrant recalled. An attorney can go without you on a misdemeanor.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Schedule a court appearance to surrender on warrant, which you attend, tell court you are sorry. How do you have a fine to pay (unless there is a court order for one, no fine exists) and still have a court date. Probably should also retain counsel or at least get a consultation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    It is better to have an attorney go to court to recall the warrant. Since it is a misdemeanor, an attorney can appear in court without you. Since you are not there, the Judge won't be able to take in custody right then and there. That is much better than you going by yourself and being taken straight to jail on such a minor charge that a good attorney can probably get dismissed.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    If you have a bench warrant based on not appearing in court of for not paying a fine you should show up at the court issuing the warrant and explain what happened. If you turn yourself in to the police you will be in jail until you go to court. Showing up at court should keep you out of jail. If you do not handle this now the next time you have contact with the police you may be arrested.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    Robert Mortland
    Robert Mortland | Law Office of Robert Mortland
    You probably have a warrant. You can find out by calling the court clerk. You may want to hire an attorney or put yourself back on calendar soon.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
    The Chastaine Law Office
    The Chastaine Law Office | Michael Chastaine
    You may be able to get this taken care of without going to jail. I would strongly recommend you contact an attorney and get some help with this.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2012
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