Iowa Bench Warrants
If the police pull you over and run your license and you’ve got an outstanding warrant, your afternoon is not going to go the way you’d hoped.
A “bench warrant” is a warrant for your arrest that’s been issued by the “bench” (by the judge.) It means that a judge has directed police officers to arrest you if they find you.
Why Do I Have a Bench Warrant?
There are a few reasons you could have a bench warrant. Bench warrants are commonly issued when someone doesn’t complete a requirement of their sentence, doesn’t pay a fine or court costs, or, most commonly, doesn’t show up for a court date.
Failure to Appear Penalties
It may be a simple misdemeanor to willfully fail to appear for your court date when you’ve been directed to show up by a citation (like a speeding ticket.)
In addition, the court can punish you for contempt. If you’re out on bail, you’ll forfeit bail — that means you or whoever bailed you out won’t get their money back when the case is over. If the court lets you out on bail again, the bail amount you’re expected to pay will probably be higher than the bail amount that you forfeited was, and it will likely be “cash only” bail, which means you’ll have to pay the whole thing in cash (no bail bonds allowed) or hang out in jail until your case is over.
Des Moines, Iowa Bench Warrant Lawyers
If you have an active arrest warrant, this is a good time to get in touch with a criminal defense lawyer at Clark and Sears Law, PLLC. We can’t guarantee any particular outcome, but we can sit down with you and talk about your case. It won’t cost you anything.
Your chances of resolving a bench warrant without getting arrested are better if you talk to an attorney, resolve any issues underlying the warrant (such as not paying a fine) and then arrange to appear before a judge instead of waiting for a cop to pick you up for speeding or for breathing too loudly in public.
If we take your case, we can set up text (or email) reminders for your court dates, if you’d like, so that you won’t forget and miss another one.
We can help you figure out what to do about your bench warrant in Des Moines, Polk County, Ankeny, Ames, Johnston, West Des Moines, Waukee, Saylorville, Bondurant, Altoona, Clive, Grimes, Pleasant Hill, Story County, Boone County, Marshall County, Dallas County, Jasper County, Madison County, Warren County, Marion County, Wapello County, Davis County, Ottumwa, Bloomfield, Iowa City, Council Bluffs, and the rest of Iowa.
This blog post is for informational purposes only and should not be relied on as legal advice. Consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction. Reading this site doesn’t create an attorney-client relationship. If you want to talk to us about representing you when there’s a bench warrant out for your arrest or when you’ve got other problems, please contact us and we’ll set up a time to talk.