Bronx Failure to Appear Lawyer

When courts require people to appear for and answer to criminal charges, they typically do so using summons. Subsequently, police officers who arrest people they suspect of committing a crime have the authority to release that person after giving them a summons to appear in court at a specific date and time.

It is vitally important for anyone who receives a summons to appear in court to make every possible effort to do so. A failure to appear when required could lead to the filing of new criminal charges. In addition, if a defendant who fails to appear is already on pretrial release, the court has the authority to revoke any bail terms and hold the defendant in custody until the resolution of their case.

A Bronx failure to appear lawyer could help if you are accused of failing to appear for criminal court sessions. You and your criminal defense attorney could work to understand your reasons for not appearing and present defenses in court as to why new charges should not apply.

The Legal Requirement to Appear

All courthouses in the State of New York can require citizens to appear upon request. Most often, this applies to situations where a defendant is accused of committing a criminal act. While police officers typically make an arrest and later transport a prospective defendant to court while still in custody, for many minor offenses the police simply release a defendant immediately upon arrest with a summons to appear in court later for arraignment.

Either way, it is required that defendants appear in court for all scheduled hearings. In fact, prosecutors are empowered to file new criminal charges against defendants who do not appear in court. New York Penal Law §215.58 states that it is a violation-level offense—punishable by up to 15 days in jail—for a defendant to not appear in court on the date that is indicated on their summons ticket, or voluntarily within 30 days afterward.

It is important to remember that this new criminal charge is levied in addition to the core case for which the court issued the summons. In addition, a court may also charge a defendant with bail jumping under NYPL §215.55.

Finally, if a defendant is out on bail awaiting trial for any offense, a failure to appear may result in the forfeiture of that bail and a new charge of at least a misdemeanor level. A Bronx failure to appear attorney could go into further detail regarding the possible consequences for failing to appear for a criminal case.

Avoiding Penalties for Failure to Appear

Sometimes a failure to appear is due to circumstances out of a defendant’s control, such as an illness or other crisis. While this is technically a violation under the terms of the law, courts are usually understanding in situations where genuine emergencies preclude a defendant’s ability to appear as scheduled.

Although a court will issue a bench warrant for a person’s arrest if they fail to appear as ordered, individuals may avoid additional charges if they have a good-faith reason for missing their court date and appear within 30 days afterward. A failure to appear lawyer in The Bronx could help gather medical records, death notices, or other relevant evidence that may help excuse an absence. An accomplished defense lawyer could also work to arrange a planned appearance in court to avoid any confusion about when a defendant is able to appear.

Find Out How a Bronx Failure to Appear Attorney Could Help

While the courts generally have some leniency for people who have a good-faith excuse for missing their hearings, the judge would still issue a bench warrant for your arrest in such a situation. In addition, failing to appear can result in new criminal charges.

Working with a Bronx failure to appear lawyer could help preserve your rights to freedom while awaiting the resolution of a criminal case. Contact a dedicated attorney immediately to start exploring the legal options available in your particular circumstances.