Kansas City Criminal Defense Lawyers
How Can I Get a Bench Warrant Cleared in KS?

How Can I Get a Bench Warrant Cleared in KS?

A bench warrant is often issued by a judge if a defendant fails to appear (FTA) in court, pay a fine, or comply with a specific court order. Whether you were charged with a citation, misdemeanor, or felony, a bench warrant can result in jail/prison time, a probation violation, increased fines, or license suspension.

Law enforcement will treat this type of warrant like an arrest warrant by first bringing you to jail and then later to appear in court. However, the police are not actively looking for those who are subject to bench warrants.

Instead, they are put into a statewide database. In the event you are pulled over or otherwise interact with law enforcement for any reason, you will be taken into custody.

The following are the consequences of bench warrants in Kansas:

  • Failure to appear – FTA in connection with a misdemeanor offense is a class B nonperson misdemeanor, which is punishable by a maximum six-month jail term and a fine no more than $1,000. FTA in connection with a felony offense is a severity level 10 nonperson felony, resulting in a prison sentence up to seven months and a fine of up to $100,000.
  • Failure to pay fine – If you fail to pay a fine or still owe bail, the judge may ask how much you can afford. The court cannot punish you for failing to pay restitution for not having enough financial resources. Depending on your income, a monthly amount and date to pay it all will be determined.
  • Disobey a court order – For example, if you fail to complete a term of probation, you will be issued a bench warrant to make an appearance in court and face a charge for probation violation.

What to Do If You Have a Bench Warrant

To avoid being arrested by the police, appearing in court is the best way to attempt to clear your bench warrant. A person can either appear in court on their own or with their lawyer. In some instances, especially regarding misdemeanors, your attorney can appear on your behalf.

An experienced criminal defense lawyer can present arguments which excuse your nonappearance or failure to comply with a court order and request your release from custody or on your own recognizance (OR) by promising to attend all future court hearings. Additionally, your attorney can set your bail at a low amount by proving you are not a flight risk.

Common examples of arguments include:

  • You never received the FTA notice
  • You forgot to provide proof of completing all probation requirements to the court
  • You were unaware of the existence of the case
  • You were mistaken as someone else

For more information about bench warrants in Kansas City, contact our legal team at Stein Law, LLC and schedule a free consultation today.


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