Effectively Addressing Your Questions When You Miss Your Court Date
When you’re charged with a crime in North Carolina, many times you will be given a date in which you are expected to appear in court. Due to backlogs in the criminal justice system, your court date could be scheduled months in advance. As a result, you may forget to show up in court at the expected date and time.
Unforeseen emergencies, such as addressing the needs of a sick child, unexpected car troubles or simply missing the bus to the court house, can also cause you to miss court. If you’ve missed your court date, you likely have a lot of questions, including:
- Will I get in trouble for missing my court date?
- What should I do if I received a failure to appear (FTA)?
- What should I do if I got an order for arrest (OFA)?
- Will I get the chance to reschedule?
- Can a lawyer help me?
At Griffin Law, PLLC, we understand the anxiety you’re feeling and the concerns you have about your future freedom. Attorney Jonathan D. Griffin is no stranger to defending clients who have missed their court date for various reasons. For 19 years and counting, he has become a trusted defense attorney in Iredell County and has a track record of success handling a wide range of criminal offenses.
If you are concerned that missing your court date could lead to additional criminal charges, talk to us and see how we can help defend your best interests.
Understanding The Consequences Of Missing Your Court Date
When a person fails to appear in court on a criminal matter an order for arrest is immediately issued and the bond is usually tripled from its original amount.
When a person fails to appear in court on a traffic matter, a notice is immediately sent out (called a failure to appear) indicating that the offender has 60 days to resolve the charge against them or risk the revocation of driving privileges. In addition to possible license revocation, 20 days after a failure to appear, an offender is assessed an administrative fine, which can make even a minor citation for speeding or another traffic violation a serious matter to contend with.
That’s not all, however. If your court appearance was part of your bond release, your bond may be forfeited and you could face additional criminal charges for failing to appear in court. A judge may also issue an order for arrest (OFA), which can result in police taking you into custody and holding you in jail for a period of time.
The Importance Of Seeking Legal Counsel Right Away
As you can see from the consequences above, it’s important to contact an attorney as soon as you realize you’ve missed your court date or soon after receiving an FTA notice from the North Carolina DMV. A qualified criminal defense attorney like Jonathan D. Griffin can help you understand your rights and how to protect them from further damage due to additional criminal charges.
Because of our extensive criminal defense experience and commitment to getting the best possible outcomes for our clients, we can often negotiate with the courts to drop orders of arrest in exchange for a new court date. At this time, we can present a strong defensive strategy that will aim at a positive outcome, not one that will negatively affect you for the rest of your life.
Turn To Us For Skilled Defense And Counsel
If you missed your court date, don’t wait to see what happens. Your rights and future best interests could be in jeopardy. At Griffin Law, PLLC, we will use our skill as negotiators and litigators to address the matter at hand and guide you toward a best-case scenario outcome.
If you would like to meet with our skilled lawyer during a free initial consultation, contact our office in Statesville. Call office or send us an email today to get started.