Missing a Court Date: Common Causes & Possible Solutions

By The Law Offices of Lance Fryrear

Missing a court date is a common occurrence. Whether your court date was a week ago, a month ago, or even years ago, you may be worried about how to fix this problem. As such, our Lynwood criminal defense lawyers are here to help you understand what happened when you missed your court date, what options may help resolve the problem, and when you need to contact an attorney for help.

There are many reasons why people miss their court dates, such as:

  • They didn’t know they had a court date
  • They forgot they had a court date
  • They relocated and never received notice of a court date

Unfortunately, you may not realize you missed your court date until you get arrested because oftentimes, people who miss their court dates get an arrest warrant accompanied by a bail amount. If this happened to you, you must either post bail or hire a bail bond company. Or, you can go into court and request a new court date, which may require posting a small amount of money.

What to Do If You Missed Your Court Date

If you are surprised to learn that you have missed a court date, the best way to find out what happened is to call the court in most cases. When you do, explain that you missed a court date and ask if you can know the status of your case.

If the court clerk tells you that there is a warrant issued for your arrest, ask what the amount of that warrant is. The amount may be surprisingly high, and if you cannot afford the warrant amount, you can ask the court clerk what your options are. Your options may include:

  • Signing for a new court date so you can explain to the judge what happened
  • Paying a reissue fee and receiving a new court date

People are often worried that they may get arrested when signing for a new court date, but typically the court has no interest in arresting you. It wants the warrant cleared. However, until your matter is resolved, there is the possibility that you could be arrested. For instance, this could happen if an officer were to pull you over for speeding while you had an outstanding warrant.

When to Call an Attorney

Wondering when to call an attorney about your missed court date? If your court date was more than six months ago or for a probation violation, you should contact an attorney because the situation can become much more complicated. If the court date was for a serious charge, such as DUI or assault, you will likely need an attorney to help get your warrant quashed without you having to pay for a bond. That will save you money.

Finally, you should contact an attorney if your bond amount is high and you have no way to post it. In that case, you should contact an attorney to see if they have the experience to develop a plan that may help you out of this situation.

We Are Here to Help You Through Tough Times

Lance Fryrear of The Law Offices of Lance Fryrear has defended the accused for more than 20 years. As such, we handle situations like yours all the time. If you need to post bail, we can refer you to reputable bonding companies if that is necessary. We may be able to help get your warrant dismissed without posting the bail. If you get into a really serious situation, we may be able to develop a long-term plan to put you in the best possible situation, so you do not have to feel hopeless.

Reach out for help at (425) 224-7075. We'll do everything we can to help you and we'll be there for you every step of the way.