QUESTION

What can I do if I missed my court date?

Asked on Sep 27th, 2011 on Criminal Law - Alabama
More details to this question:
What should I do about missing a court date? Will I get jail time? Is there something I can do?
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33 ANSWERS
JC
Jeffery A. Cojocar (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Jul 08th, 2013 at 10:50 PM
Turn yourself in on the nonappearance warrant.

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DM
Daniel Kieth Martin (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 1:41 PM
Go to the calendaring department of the court that you missed and ask them to put you back on calendar. You probably have a warrant. The warrant will remain active until you go to court. It is possible that you will be remanded (put in jail) when you go to your court date. You will not be arrested when you go to the calendar department. It would be a good idea to hire a lawyer because you have a better chance of staying out of custody if you have a private attorney with you.

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PD
Peter Alex Duarte (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 1:41 PM
Missing a court date may result in having awarrant issued by the judge for your arrest. Call the court and give your name or case number to find out if a warrant has been issued. You should consult with an attorney about placing your case back on the court calendar so that the judge can have the warrant recalled. You may go to jail if you are unable to payforthe bail set by the court.

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ES
Eric Jon Sterkenburg (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 12:55 PM
Go to the court that you were assigned to and check in with the bailiff. He will tell the clerk that you are there and why. It will help if you bring in the paper work that you have on the case. The case will be called and the judge will ask you why you did not show up. You may get a scolding by the judge but you should not have to go to jail.

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JD
Joseph Briscoe Dane (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:43 AM
Court date for what? How long ago? Why did you miss? What is your record like? If you missed your court date, a warrant for your arrest may I've been issued. It's always better to deal with this by going to court (with your lawyer), rather than waiting to be arrested on the warrant. The longer you wait, the worse it looks and the worse it could get. Talk to a local criminal defense attorney.

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DR
Dennis Julian Roberts (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:37 AM
Call the Clerk, ask to be added to calendar and come up with a damn good excuse. Here is where you really need a private attorney or the public defender.

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CE
Craig W. Elhart (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:37 AM
You should contact the court and advise that you missed the date and make arrangements to appear. It will be up to the judge as to any possible punishment. What will happen will depend on why you missed your court date.

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RP
Ruzanna Poghosyan (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:32 AM
If you missed your court date, there will probably be a bench warrant issued for your arrest. You should hire a criminal defense attorney, go to court, recall the bench warrant and quash it. Whether you get jail time or not, it will all depend on the criminal charges that the prosecution filed against you.

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JA
Jared Clayton Austin (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:26 AM
If you did not show up for a court date, the judge probably issued a bench warrant meaning you could possibly go to jail. It doesn't mean you will, but it's possible. A lot will depend on what your excuse is and how soon you get it taken care of. It is in your best interest that you take care of it as soon as possible. Get a lawyer if necessary to help you along.

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CH
Ms. Cynthia Russell Henley (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 10:18 AM
Call your lawyer. If you do not have one, hire one. You will need one to represent you and you may be able to do something about your bond if it just happened like today. If not, then you will probably have to post a new bond and then attend court faithfully to deal with your case.

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SF
Stephen Lewis Freeborn (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 8:29 AM
Whether you do jail time depends upon your prior history and whether or not you have missed court dates in the past. You need to contact the clerk of the court and see about getting the matter rescheduled. A warrant has probably been issued and if you don't get this resolved, you could possibly get picked up and taken to jail.

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JA
Jared Altman (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 8:29 AM
Contact your lawyer or if you don't have one, call the court clerk to see if it's been re-scheduled. If not, then ask that it be added to the next available calendar. If a warrant has been issued, then arrange to surrender yourself, preferably with a lawyer.

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EL
Eric Paul Lampel (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 7:40 AM
There will be a warrant for your arrest probably. Get a good lawyer to go in and explain and get you more time to avoid jail.

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EB
Edward Jerome Blum (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 7:12 AM
Depends. If you missed it recently and go in to court and tell them that you mixed up the dates, it is likely that nothing will happen. If you are worried and it is a misdemeanor, you can hire a lawyer to appear for you.

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CH
Christopher L Hoglin (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 5:51 AM
Missing Court date - California If you missed a court date in California, the judge presiding over your case likely issued a Bench Warrant. This means, if you are stopped by the police, or they happen to go to your house, you can be arrested. In order to prevent being arrested, you'll need to go to the Criminal Clerk's window and ask that your case be "added-on" to the Court's calendar. Typically, you need to get to the Court's Criminal Clerks' department no later than 8:30 a.m., in order to get your case heard that same day. Although the judge has the authority to place you into custody, if your charge is a minor misdemeanor, it is unlikely (however not impossible), that the judge will reprimand you into custody. If you're charged with a Felony, and you posted bail to get out of jail originally, you should go to court with an attorney. This may be your only way of convincing the court to leave you out of jail on bail.

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CL
Carina Laguzzi (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 5:21 AM
Contact your attorney immediately as you have to turn yourself in as soon as possible. You could get a contempt of court charge (on top of your original charges) depending on the Judge and the reason why you missed court. Talk to your attorney about what potential consequences.

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MM
Matthew Murillo (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 29th, 2011 at 5:20 AM
Go into court immediately, or hire an attorney to do so for you. Add yourself back on the Court's calendar and ask to have the warrant recalled, that is most likely placed. The longer you wait, the more likely it will be for a judge to decide to take you into custody.

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NG
Mr. Nicholas George (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 6:10 PM
Call asap the prosecutor and explain your situation in detail. Likely, a warrant has been issued for your arrest. Call the clerk's office of the court which your case is in.

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CB
Ms. Cindy L. Barton-Coombs (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 6:09 PM
Call the court right now and tell them why you missed. Ask them if they will set you up a new court date. Don't miss that one. Sometimes they will take off the warrant, sometimes they won't but don't just ignore it. It won't go away. You can receive jail time for failure to appear but usually won't if you take care of it.

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GD
Gabriel Eric Dorman (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 6:08 PM
Whenever you miss a court date, the court will issue a warrant for your arrest. As such, you should immediately appear in court to recall the warrant. As a general rule, you should never appear in court to recall a warrant without a lawyer to represent you as this could be the difference between going in and staying out of jail. As such, you should immediately contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to explain your case and situation and go into court for you to recall the warrant. Depending on what kind of charges you have, the attorney may be able to recall the warrant without you ever having to go into court yourself. I hope this answer was helpful.

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Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:54 PM
You should call the court and reschedule.

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Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:35 PM
There was probably a bench warrant issued for your arrest. You need to go into court to have the warrant canceled. Whether or not you are looking at jail or not depends on the circumstances. It's possible to cancel the warrant on your own but it will be much easier for you to hire a criminal defense attorney.

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SD
Stephen Patrick Dempsey (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:33 PM
Do you have a lawyer? Otherwise, contact the court with a good explanation because the court will most likely have issued a bench warrant for your arrest. You may need to turn yourself in and the Judge will decide whether s/he wants to set bail or not depending on the case.

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JS
James A Schoenberger, Jr (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:31 PM
When you miss a court date a bench warrant is usually issued for your arrest. Immediately contact your attorney or the court and ask that a hearing be set to quash the warrant.

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SL
Shannon W Locke (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:30 PM
If you have a lawyer you need to contact that lawyer asap and make arrangements to go to court. If you do not have a lawyer you need to contact a lawyer in your area asap. This is a situation where prompt action can make a real difference, warrants can be recalled and bonds can be lowered. However, if you wait everything just gets harder and the judge will most likely believe that you have been running so you can use drugs or get away with more crime.

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JO
Mr. Jason Clay Overton (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:28 PM
You need to hire an attorney. A Failure to Appear usually results in an additional charge, fines, and a warrant for your arrest. An attorney may help you avoid these things if you act quickly enough.

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RS
Ryan John Stevens (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:26 PM
Yes, contact an attorney immediately and have an attorney contact the court on your behalf to inquire as to whether there is an arrest warrant for you. If there is a warrant, the attorney should have it quashed as soon as possible. If there is not a warrant, you may have a drivers license suspension or other penalty. A lawyer should be able to help you. Time is of the essence so you don't get arrested.

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JB
Jonathan A. Baner (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 5:02 PM
You don't want to miss criminal court dates under any circumstances. Likely you're bail is revoked, and a bench warrant is issued for your arrest. Generally, you need to have the warrant quashed (not "squashed"). Circumstances vary on how to accomplish that.

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TL
Todd Alan Landgren (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 4:55 PM
So much depends on the court, the judge and how long you have waited. Is it a misdemeanor or a felony? Usually if the attorney knows the court, the warrant, if any, can be recalled without penalty. This is again depending on the above factors. Hire a lawyer that knows the court. Don't try to do this without counsel.

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Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 4:54 PM
You will have a warrant for your arrest. You need to hire an attorney to work with a bail bonds company to keep you out of trouble.

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JY
Jeff Fengcheng Yeh (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 4:54 PM
You should have an attorney go to court without you to recall the warrant and obtain a new court date. If you go to court by yourself, you could be taken in custody.

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MP
Michael John Palumbo (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 4:50 PM
You have to contact your lawyer and arrange a surrender date.

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EZ
Elizabeth Miller Zwiebel (Unclaimed Profile)
Answered on Sep 28th, 2011 at 4:49 PM
Hiring an attorney will be your best option. An attorney can negotiate with the prosecutor and have any warrants for your failure to appear withdrawn or recalled. When you miss a court date the judge automatically will issue an FTA warrant so that you can be picked up by the police and brought before the judge to answer for your case. If you hire an attorney prior to being arrested for the FTA it may be avoided. An attorney may be able to recall the warrant and reset your case for another date which will give you time to talk to them about your options.

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