When you have received a summons to appear in court for a traffic violation or crime you have committed, it’s important to take it seriously. Failure to appear in Maryland is a serious offense that can result in a warrant for your arrest. Whether you’ve been charged with a crime and have a summons to appear in court, or you have received the charge of failure to appear in court, you need to hire professional legal help to understand your next steps.
Court Hearings for Maryland Crimes
Though not all violations and criminal offenses in this state require court appearances, most will involve court hearings that will take place in order to determine your conviction and resulting penalties. The offenses that often require you to appear in court in Maryland include:
- Drug offenses
- Juvenile cases
- Violent crimes
- Traffic offenses
- DUI/DWI charges
What is a Bench Warrant?
If you have been charged with an offense in Maryland that requires you to appear in court and you fail to attend, the court will issue a bench warrant. This warrant authorizes law enforcement officers to apprehend you in order to bring you to court in front of a judge to face your charges. In addition, your initial failure to appear in court is a violation itself and will be added on to your original charges.
What are Reasonable Excuses for Failure to Appear?
Failing to appear in court at the scheduled date and time of your hearing is a violation of the law. However, there are some cases where the reason you were unable to appear is acceptable to the judge, including:
- A documented serious injury or illness
- Serious illness or injury of someone under your care (immediate relative)
- Failure to receive notice of the hearing due to an error on the court’s side
- An automotive accident or breakdown
- Incarceration on other charges
- Other unforeseen circumstances beyond your control
How Can I Avoid Additional Penalties and Charges?
Have you received a summons to appear in court but missed your court date? It’s advisable to take action rather than waiting to be arrested and getting additional penalties assessed. Taking action means partnering with a reputable Maryland criminal defense attorney to file a motion that recalls the warrant. When you seek professional legal help, you may be able to have your bench warrant withdrawn altogether and have a bond that was forfeited be reinstated.
Your Resource for Legal Help with MD Court Hearings
If you’ve committed a traffic violation or criminal offense in Maryland that requires you to appear in court, or you have failed to appear for a mandatory court hearing, it’s vital to get legal assistance from a Maryland criminal defense lawyer so that you can ensure your charges and penalties aren’t any worse than they have to be. Contact our experts at Albers & Associates today for your free consultation and rest assured your case will be handled with the care and attention it deserves.