What to do if there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest


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No one likes to hear that the police are looking for them or that there is an outstanding arrest warrant with their name on it. If you should get ANY inkling that there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest the first thing that you want to do is to make sure that the information that you received is true. Even though you may not have a common name there are so many people with similar names so contact the courthouse to verify that you indeed are the one that the police are looking for to arrest.

This is especially important because if there is an arrest warrant that incorrectly names you then you want to correct that mistake right away. If the arrest warrant reads Athel Q. Highpockets and your name is Athel Q. Highpackets, your first order of business is to provide proof that you are not the one that the police are looking for. The best course of action in a matter of mistaken identity is to go to the courthouse with proof of your name, address and all pertinent information that will convince the Court and the police that a mistake has been made. Once the court and/or the police review your proof then if at all possible request some type of written document stating that the matter has been resolved and that you are not the subject of the outstanding warrant.

On the other hand if you are just the person that the police are looking for then you have to make some quick decisions that will impact your liberty, freedom and wallet.Ifthe outstanding warrant is based on monies that are owed but have not been paid then you can either pay the amount owed or make payment plan arrangementswhereby you can pay a certain amounteach week , month or whatever intervals decreed by the court.It is important that you either pay the monies owed or enter into a payment plane because there are usually court costs that include failure to appear costs, administrative costs, collections fees and so forth that can add up to 25 to 40% of the original warrant amount. Chances are that if you did not have the money to pay the original $1,000 then you probably do not have the funds to pay the $1,400 which is what the warrant plus all the fees and court costs will total if you do not pay the original amount in full or make arrangements to pay via a payment plan.

If your outstanding warrant involves a crime and will entail jail time it is in your best interest to contact an attorney right away if at all possible. Unless you are one of those folks who have fantasies about Bonnie and Clyde or love the idea of lying spread eagle on wet pavement by the side of a busy street with tons of onlookers; let me say it again it would probably be in your best interest to contact an attorney or make arrangements to resolve your warrant. If you are proceeding without an attorney you must act quickly and carefully. If you are not an ardent COPS fan and a highway police chase is not your idea of a fun way to spend a Sunday afternoon, then you would be better served to give yourself up.If your outstanding warrant is for a very serious crime you probably want to contact the police and tell them that you are unarmed and that you will be coming in alone to surrender. When you go to the station to surrender or resolve your warrant take care that you do not wear excessive clothing that could or would allow for concealed weapons.

Once you are in the police station there are usually options that are available in regards to your outstanding warrant. Two of the most popular options for persons appearing in court without attorney representation are to either post bond or stay in custody. If you are allowed to post bond then you will be given a new court date and allowed to return home either that same day/night or the next morning. If you cannot post bond then you will be detained until the day that your case is called for hearing in court.

The most important thing to remember about outstanding warrants is communication. You need to let the court or police know if the warranthas been mistakenly issued for you and most of all you need to contact the court and or police and make arrangements to resolve your warrant if the warrant is actually for you. Your case will receive a more favorable review if you take the initiative to resolve your warrant and not force the police to hunt you down.