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Outstanding Warrants in California

A lot of people will call me and come into the office because they have an outstanding warrant and they haven't dealt with it.  Sometimes it's only a few days old; sometimes it's a few weeks old; sometimes it's months old, and even sometimes it's years old.

It's one of those scenarios where you should get on the stick and get it dealt with.  Who wants to look over their shoulder worried about the police coming to arrest them, embarrassing them at their work, their family, their neighbors, their relatives?

Most of these warrants can be taken care of fairly easily.  The first step is to sit down with an attorney.  Talk to him.  Let him know what's going on — why you're in bench warrant status, what the underlying case is, what your prior criminal record is, and then that attorney is going to be able to give you a feel for kind of what you're facing.

It's easy to get rid of a warrant just by showing up, they take the warrant out of the system.  The biggest issue is, once the warrant is out of the system, now you have the case to deal with, what's going to happen then?  That's something that a good seasoned criminal defense attorney can give you an idea on based on a number of different factors, but also, that attorney is going to have to talk to the prosecutor and judge about the scenario.  Then they'll be in the best position to advise you.

Go To Court With Your Attorney

This is one of those things where you're just going to have to face the music.  Go in with your attorney.  Be prepared.  If you owe a bunch of money in fines, get the money together so your attorney can say, we've got all the money for the fines.  Done.

If you didn't show up, you need to talk to your attorney about why you didn't show up.  That's one of the first questions the judge asks the attorney.  Where's your client been for the last year?  If you have a good reason why you weren't there and you're prepared to do whatever it is you need to do related to the case and you show up with your attorney and the judge sees that you're serious about taking care of your case, now you're in a position to really make an argument to give you a chance.

If on the other hand, you just bury your head in the sand and you get caught and the police bring you in before the judge, the judge is basically going to say, you would have never come in if they didn't catch you so why should I give you any kind of a break?

So, just by virtue of the fact that you hire an attorney, go into court to deal with your case, you've already got a leg up.  The judge sees, this person's got their act together.  They're trying to take care of their case.  I'm gonna give them a break for their outstanding warrant.  I'm gonna quash it and let's see what we can do about resolving the case.

Developing a Plan To Resolve Your Case

So, first step — make the phone call and speak with a criminal defense lawyer at our office. Let's sit down.  Let's talk about your case.  Second step — let's get a game plan together as to exactly what the issue is going to be as to why you didn't show up and how these guys are going to want to resolve the case.

Once we have that determined, then we're really in a position to start to take care of your case.  Try to take care of it in a manner that gets you as unscathed as possible so you can continue to work.  You can continue to take care of your family and do what you need to do and not have this warrant hanging over your head and not have to worry about going to jail or some other punishment that you can't handle.

So, you need information first.  You need education first on how the system works, what you can do in your specific case.  So, when we meet, we're going to get a strategy together.  When you leave the meeting you're going to know what your job is, what you have to get from me and you're going to know what I'm going to do for you to execute a plan for success to get your warrant out of the system, get you moving in the right direction and get you out of the criminal justice system as fast as possible so that you can move on with your life.

And of course, we're going to do everything we can to protect your rights, your freedom, your reputation and your criminal record.

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