Failing to appear in court can carry serious penalties, and it occurs more frequently than you may think. This offense has many causes, but whether your absence in court was due to a family or medical emergency or you simply forgot a court date that was scheduled months before, you will likely face criminal charges for your mistake.
If you have recently been accused of failing to appear in court, you should be proactive about your next steps by enlisting a qualified legal professional. A Hennepin County failure to appear lawyer could be your advocate and fight to protect your rights against the prosecution’s case.
Consequences of Failing to Appear in Court
If a defendant misses a scheduled court date, they may face serious penalties depending on the severity of the offense, as provided under § 609.49 of the Minnesota Code. For example, if a person who has been charged with or convicted of a felony fails to appear in court after being notified that doing so is crime, or has been released on the condition that they would appear in court when required, they could face criminal penalties.
The penalties for felony offenders who fail to appear include imprisonment for up to half of the maximum term and/or a hefty fine. At minimum, they may face a prison sentence of at least one year and one day or a $1,500 fine.
Juvenile offenders who intentionally fail to appear in court may also be found guilty of a felony. The penalties they could face include up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $10,000, or both. For misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor offenders, the intentional failure to appear in court could result in an additional misdemeanor charge. Accordingly, legal representation from a local attorney may be crucial, regardless of the penalties that a person may face for failing to appear in court.
Steps to Take Following a Criminal Charge for Failure to Appear
When an individual fails to appear in court, the judge presiding over their criminal case may issue a warrant for their arrest. In these cases, it is crucial that a defendant obtains legal representation to avoid this outcome.
The consequences resulting from a criminal charge or conviction for failure to appear can be severe and should be avoided if possible. If a person fails to appear in court, whether intentionally or unintentionally, they should consult a knowledgeable nearby attorney for assistance.
Let a Hennepin County Failure to Appear Attorney Take on Your Case
Failing to appear for a scheduled court date may result in lasting consequences, even when an individual’s failure to appear is unintentional. In addition to facing a criminal charge and possible conviction, you could suffer a financial penalty or be required to serve jail time.
Fortunately, the right legal advocate to handle your claim could be just an email or phone call away. To learn more about your case and the potential legal recourse you may have, reach out to an experienced Hennepin County failure to appear lawyer and set up a consultation today.