Do I Have an Outstanding Warrant?
April 2, 2019
If you failed to appear in court as required because of a moving violation or to face criminal charges, a warrant for your arrest was likely issued. In most cases, the police need an arrest warrant in order to make an arrest. An arrest warrant must state the offense the individual is suspected of committing, the individual’s identity, and in many cases, stipulations for the arrest.
If you have any reason to believe an arrest warrant has been issued for you, do not wait to find out. Finding out whether you have an active arrest warrant is a simple process that can give you peace of mind or a reason to start working with a criminal defense lawyer.
How to Find Out if there is a Warrant for You
Not all warrants are for criminal offenses. A warrant may be issued for a municipal case as well, such as an unpaid parking ticket. This is known as a bench warrant, which is issued for any violation of court rules.
Data regarding criminal cases is typically public record, whereas data about civil or municipal cases is not always available to the public. If your case is one that is not public record, such as a domestic violence case, contact a bail bondsman or a lawyer to determine whether there is an existing warrant for your arrest.
If your case does not fall into this category, determining whether a warrant exists for you is simple. Contact the clerk of the court for the county or city where your case would have been charged. Without identifying yourself as the subject of a potential warrant, ask if a warrant exists for the individual with your name. You may need to share information such as your social security number, your case number, and your date of birth to determine whether a warrant exists for you. This is true for state and federal cases. If you are not comfortable calling for yourself, ask your lawyer or a close friend or relative to make the call.
What to Do if you are the Subject of a Warrant
If you find out that there is a warrant for your arrest, you need to take action. In some cases, such as those involving parking tickets and other minor infractions, the right course of action is to go to the courthouse and pay your fine. For more serious cases, contact a lawyer to start developing a defense strategy for your case. Whatever you do, do not fail to act. Talk to a lawyer to determine the best way to handle your warrant.
Delaware County Criminal Defense Lawyer, Heather J. Mattes, Offers Guidance if You Have a Warrant for Your Arrest
Having an outstanding warrant means that you can be arrested and potentially found guilty of a criminal offense. If you are in this situation, you have the right to defend your case against the charge with the aid of an experienced criminal lawyer. Contact a West Chester criminal defense lawyer at the Law Offices of Heather J. Mattes to set up your initial consultation. Complete an online contact form or call us at 610-431-7900 to get started. Our office is located in West Chester and we work with clients in Media and throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania, including Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lehigh County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County.