Experienced. Dedicated. Trusted.

What is a Bench Warrant?

Most bench warrants are issued when a person fails to appear in court. Our criminal defense lawyer in Atlanta explains other times these warrants are issued, and the penalties that may result.

Bench warrants are documents issued by the court or a judge that allows law enforcement to arrest and detain any person that failed to appear in court. Bench warrants sound serious because they are, and you may be detained by police for some time if one is issued against you. If you learn that a bench warrant has been issued against you, it is critical to speak to an Atlanta criminal defense lawyer.

When are Bench Warrants Issued?

Once a court or judge has issued a bench warrant, it is effective immediately. As soon as police officers, or any other law enforcement official, obtains a bench warrant, they can arrest the individual the warrant is against and detain them in police custody. When a bench warrant was issued for a failure to appear, the individual named on the warrant will have to attend a court hearing in front of a judge. Here, they will have to explain why they failed to appear in court.

While bench warrants are most issued for a failure to appear in court, there are other reasons for these warrants, as well. These are as follows:

  • Failure to pay a court fee
  • Failure to comply with a court order
  • Failure to pay restitution, or a fine
  • Failure to attend jury duty, although this is rare

If you did not comply with any of the above, a judge may consider you to be in contempt of court. Your failure to appear will be presumed to be because you feared being found guilty. If you are detained by law enforcement, the amount of bail you must pay may be much higher because you will now be deemed a high risk. It is important to speak to an Atlanta criminal defense lawyer to prevent this from happening.

Negative Impacts of a Bench Warrant

Regardless of the reason a bench warrant was issued against you, you will face several consequences. The most common of these include:

  • Detainment, without bail, in some cases
  • Increased fines
  • An extension of a probation sentence
  • A suspension of your driver’s license
  • Denial of bail

The above penalties can adversely affect your future. Fortunately, with the guidance of a knowledgeable Atlanta criminal defense lawyer, they can be avoided.

Call Our Criminal Defense Lawyer in Atlanta for Help With Your Warrant

Bench warrants may be most issued for failure to appear, but they are still serious. At Ghanayem & Rayasam, our Atlanta criminal defense lawyer can build a solid case to give you the best chance of avoiding the negative consequences that may impact you otherwise. Call us today at (404) 561-0202 or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys and to learn more about how we can help with your case.