Arrest Warrant Guide

New Jersey Arrest Warrants

The overwhelming majority of Americans manage to make it through their entire lives without running afoul of the law. Yes, there might be an occasional parking or speeding ticket issued, but once they are paid then your record is essentially clean. It is when those court ordered items go unpaid that you can get into some serious trouble.

Then there is the issue of identity theft. Consider this scenario: a thief steals your credit card and runs up charges in another state. You're not aware of these charges, but when the credit card company tries to collect they are sending information to the thief's address which goes ignored. Ultimately, the credit card company can take "you" to court. Of course you will never know this and a failure to appear can generate an arrest warrant. All of that from doing nothing!

To determine if you might have an outstanding New Jersey arrest warrant, you can research through many available online data bases. Warrants are a matter of public record and can be searched on anyone. The question becomes is it a bench warrant or felony warrant?

New Jersey Bench Warrant
A bench warrant is issued when a person has failed to follow a specific court order. These court orders can be a summons to appear, unpaid traffic tickets and even ignoring a notice to serve on a jury. Another version of a court ordered obligation is any probation related to a previous charge such as a DUI. If you haven't completed those classes or courses ordered by the court you could be subject to a bench warrant and subsequent arrest.

The only way to resolve a bench warrant is by appearing before the court that issued the warrant. A bench warrant has no expiration date and is valid in any other state. In others words if you have a New Jersey bench warrant and are stopped for speeding in Wyoming, you could be arrested and sent back to New Jersey.

New Jersey Felony Arrest Warrants
For more serious crimes, a judge will swear out a felony arrest warrant. This happens when that judge is presented with enough evidence to consider you a prime suspect on the charge. If a grand jury has been empowered to examine that evidence then they can issue an indictment which compels a judge to swear out an arrest warrant.

Felony arrest warrants are given more immediate attention especially if it is a case involving injury against another person. This means the police will be going out to arrest the individual. Like the bench warrant, the felony warrant also doesn't have an expiration date and can be accessed anywhere in the country.

How to Deal with a New Jersey Warrant
If you discover there is a warrant sworn out in your name, you can surrender yourself to the court. By doing that you might be given special consideration, but there is no guarantee of that. Before surrendering, you should retain the services of an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help you navigate through the court system. Working with a qualified attorney will afford you the best opportunity to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.