What Are the Consequences of Failing To Appear In Court?
If you don’t make your court appearance, what happens? You’ll be in big trouble, of course, but it’s more than that. You might have both law enforcement and loved ones angry with you. Not showing up in court results in severe consequences.
A Warrant for Your Arrest
The police in your community will know you missed your court appearance. Even if all the cop stopped you for was a broken taillight or loud muffler, that officer will run your plates and check your background. Law enforcement will know soon enough who you are, arrest you, and send you back to jail – usually.
Driver’s License Suspension
Now, you might have to not only sit in jail if stopped by the police, but the court may suspend your driver’s license. Then, you will have to wait until after appearing before a judge for the original offense before you can reinstate your license. If this happens, you must pay fees before legally driving again.
Additional Offense Charges
In addition to the first set of charges you already have that required a court appearance, you’ll now have new charges. This may include Contempt of and Failure to Appear strikes against you. If you resisted arrest or talked disrespectfully to an officer, you could receive a Resisting Arrest and Disorderly Conduct charge.
Your troubles multiply if you also used drugs or drank before operating your vehicle when stopped. Worse yet, you might pay the consequences for violating a judge order not to leave your jurisdiction, if you do. For instance, maybe the court told you not to leave town or cross state lines. If so, this adds to possible citations and charges.
You could receive more jail time, but you also may have to pay fines for each charge. This also can result in more court costs associated with additional charges, especially if you request a lawyer. The more you rebel against the legal system, that’s all the more you end up paying for in the future.
Increased or No Bail
The court will either set another bail amount, or you’ll have to sit in jail with no opportunity for bail. If the judge grants you bail again, it will probably be a higher amount than in the past. You’ll still have to pay the original bail amount too.
If you skipped bail and end up back in jail, the courts could confiscate any collateral held up as a surety that you will appear in court. In addition to irritating cops while under arrest, you could lose your own property.
Worse yet, collateral confiscation causes strained loved-one relationships if someone loses items that belong to them because of you. Not only could the court take away jewelry or vehicles, but they also could take real estate and financial assets.
This is serious business! If you fail to make your court appearance, it doesn’t just affect you. Think about what you’re doing. Either you or your loved one can call a bail bond agent at 404-577-BAIL for more information or start the bail posting process online. Payment plans are available.