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Dupee & Monroe

New York Bench Warrant Lawyers

A bench warrant is a type of arrest warrant that New York judges may issue against a defendant in a criminal case or another similar proceeding.  For instance, a judge may issue a bench warrant after holding a defendant or other person in contempt for violating the rules of court.  Judges will typically issue a bench warrant when a criminal defendant fails to appear in court when mandated to do so, such as for court appearances before trial while the defendant is out on bail. Our lawyers understand how it can be frustrating for anyone to receive a bench warrant. 

The bench warrant gives the police the power to arrest the subject of the warrant and take them to jail immediately.  For criminal defendants awaiting trial, this means they are likely subject to a higher bail with additional conditions, or they may be denied bail entirely should the court now consider them a flight risk.

 From their office in Goshen, the New York criminal defense attorneys at Dupée & Monroe, P.C. help people throughout the Hudson Valley and Orange County who have been made the subject of a bench warrant in a New York court.

When will judges issue bench warrants?

There are a variety of circumstances that may lead to a judge issuing a bench warrant, but the following circumstances are the most common:

  • Failing to appear in court for a pending criminal case after arraignment;
  • Failing to report for jury duty or to the court as an empaneled juror;
  • Failing to appear in court or respond to a grand jury or other court-ordered subpoena;
  • Repeatedly failing to comply with a court order, resulting in contempt of court.

What happens when a bench warrant is issued in New York?

Sections 120 and 530.70(2) of the New York Rules of Criminal Procedure govern how a bench warrant and arrest warrant may be executed.  Law enforcement officials executing a bench warrant may enter your home or any premises in which they “reasonably believe” you may be present, as long as it is not “the dwelling of a third party who is not subject to” the warrant.  Notice of bench warrants can be triggered during traffic stops or other situations involving background checks by state agencies, or by customs agents at New York airports.  The warrant will only be closed by the judge who issued the warrant, and typically only after you finally appear in court.

You may have a bench warrant for your arrest and not know it

As surprising as it may seem, in many cases a bench warrant may be issued for someone’s arrest and they will have no idea.  You may have been issued a notice to appear in court, such as for a traffic violation or other seemingly innocuous court proceeding, but did not receive the notice because you moved to a new location or due to some other error with the mailing.  Upon your failure to show up for the hearing, the court may issue a bench warrant for your arrest; you may then only find out about it when you are pulled over for speeding and then suddenly put in handcuffs and taken to jail. 

An individual before a court can even request that a bench warrant be issued when, for example, an ex-spouse fails to pay child support.  A bench warrant, if not handled properly by qualified criminal defense attorneys, can carry a host of unfortunate consequences such as the risk of arrest at any time, an inability to get certain jobs, or trouble getting a loan, among possible consequences.

How to respond to a bench warrant

If you have reason to believe there is a bench warrant out in your name, it is absolutely vital that you contact a skilled and seasoned criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to make sure that you do not suddenly find yourself a wanted criminal or otherwise face more serious repercussions than necessary for a failure to appear.  The New York criminal defense attorneys at Dupée & Monroe can help you find the best approach to dealing with a bench warrant and help mitigate the consequences as much as possible.  Taking proactive steps, such as turning yourself in, is often the best course of action to defuse a judge’s ire, and the attorneys at Dupée & Monroe are here to walk you through the process and ensure that you get the fair representation you deserve.

Help is Available if there is a New York Bench Warrant in Your Name

The lawyers at Dupée & Monroe have decades of experience helping people like you avoid the most serious consequences which can arise from the issuance of a bench warrant or the imposition of criminal charges. If you have a bench warrant out for your arrest or if you have been arrested for some other offense in Goshen, Orange County or anywhere in the Hudson Valley region, contact Dupée & Monroe, P.C. for immediate assistance from experienced New York criminal defense attorneys.

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