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Plano Failure to Appear Lawyer Where Passion Meets Purpose

If you were arrested for a non-violent crime and you do not have an extensive criminal record, you were likely released from custody after a short time. You might have had to post bail to ensure you returned to court to answer the charge against you, or you might have been released with your promise to appear. Even way, attending your future court date to deal with the charges is your obligation.

If you missed the court date for any reason, you might need the assistance of a skilled defense attorney. If you attempt to rectify the situation immediately, it could potentially resolve the matter with little additional consequence. A Plano failure to appear lawyer could help you present your reasons to the court and assure that all pending matters get resolved fairly and finally.

Failing To Appear Is A Separate Criminal Act

Texas Penal Code § 38.10 dictates that skipping a criminal court hearing is a crime. If an individual posted bail to secure their release, the crime is called bail jumping. If the individual fails to appear, they forfeit any bail they posted. Additionally, the individual will also be financially responsible for the cost of impaneling any present jury.

A court will typically issue a bench warrant when someone fails to appear in court for a scheduled hearing. Depending on the original offense, the police might search for the individual to arrest them on the bench warrant. Once arrested, they can be held in jail until the judge has room in their calendar to reschedule the missed proceeding.

Even if the police do not actively search for the individual, the fact that there is a bench warrant for their arrest is entered into law enforcement databases. Any interaction with the police will likely result in arrest. Individuals should immediately contact a skilled attorney in Plano if they are wanted or arrested on a bench warrant for failing to appear in court.

Consequences Of Failing To Appear

If the underlying charge was punishable by a fine but not jail, the failure to appear offense is a Class C misdemeanor that carries a $500 fine. If the original charge was a misdemeanor that could carry a jail sentence, failing to appear is a Class A misdemeanor that could lead to one year in jail and a $4000 fine.

In addition, a charge of bail jumping or failing to appear could lead to consequences in the future. If the individual is arrested again, even if it is years later, they will be less likely to be granted bail. A history of bail jumping could also influence whether an inmate is extended early release or parole.

Legal Excuses For Failing To Appear

Once an individual has missed a scheduled court date, they must address the matter as soon as possible. To avoid criminal liability for failing to appear, they must present a legal excuse for missing the court date and a legal reason for not addressing the matter since the missed proceeding.

Working with an experienced attorney in Plano could help the individual present a legal reason for their failure to appear. The law excuses missed court dates under the following circumstances:

  • Verifiable serious illness, such as being in the hospital
  • A close family member’s medical emergency or hospitalization
  • An emergency such as a car wreck
  • A close family member’s death
  • Being in jail or court on another matter
  • Not receiving notice of the court date

Even when an individual does not have a legally justifiable excuse for missing court, it could be possible to resolve the matter. The individual could voluntarily appear soon after the missed date to apologize to the court and present their reasons for the non-appearance. The court might then reschedule the matter without imposing additional punishment.

Resolve Charges With A Resourceful Plano Failure To Appear Attorney

If you have missed a court date, delaying only makes things worse. Accepting responsibility for missing the proceeding and demonstrating an intention to appear for future court dates could help minimize the impact of bail jumping. Call a dedicated and experienced Plano failure to appear lawyer at Barbieri Law right away to resolve the matter.

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“When individuals come to us seeking legal assistance, they are often in a vulnerable situation. We will never take advantage of the distressed state a client is in, but rather will stand by his or her side from start to finish, never giving up.” -Heather Barbieri, Founding Attorney Start your case

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