How can I resolve an out of state bench warrant?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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How can I resolve an out of state bench warrant?

I was arrested 7 years ago and charged for driving under the influence. I did not appear in court on my appearance date. I now live out of state and would like to know what I need to do to resolve this. Their are special circumstances why I was unable to attend court. I since then just let it go and did not take care of it.

Asked on September 8, 2016 under Criminal Law, Oregon


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

While officers may not track you down, especially if you are in another state, once the bench warrant for failure to appear (FTA)was issued, this means that if you are stopped again by the police for anything, even jaywalking, you will be arrested and taken into custody on the spot. You may or may not then be extradited. Additionally, employment background checks may turn this all up, so obtaining a new job will be difficult. As you seem to know understand, it will be far better for you to turn yourself into the court. What you need to do now is to hire an attorney who practices in the locality of where the warrant was issued. They can utilize their local contacts in the court sytem to negotiate to your best advantage. And remember, you have to deal with not only with the FTA but also the underlying charge of driving of a DUI.  

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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