Maryland Bench Warrant: How Does It Work, Process and Recalling the Warrant?

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Do you have questions about the Maryland bench warrant process? “How can a warrant get recalled?” “What should I do if the court issued a bench warrant for me?” “How long does it take to recall a bench warrant in Maryland?”

Maryland bench warrant lawyer Randolph Rice explains the process; from the issuance of a bench warrant to getting it dropped or quashed by the court, and how a Baltimore criminal defense lawyer can do it all for you.

He’ll also answer: what to do if there is a bench warrant issued for you?

Do you have a pending bench warrant, keep reading to learn about your options and how a Maryland bench warrant lawyer can help get you out of the situation and resolve the case in your favor.

How Do Maryland Bench Warrants Work?

A bench warrant is an order issued by a Judge to arrest an individual for failing to appear for a court appearance. Thus the word “bench” which refers to the Judge, who sits at the bench and warrant, which has origins old english for “protector” from the public.

A bench warrant is issued either from the request by the State of Maryland or on the Judge’s own initiative. If an individual, who has been ordered to appear in Court by either a summons or prior arrest, does not appear in Court, then the Judge may/will issue a bench warrant.

A Bench Warrant Does Not Mean Jail

A Maryland bench warrant does not always mean a person will go to jail. A lawyer can file a motion to recall the warrant or more properly a “Motion to Quash.”

If the Judge grants the motion to quash, then the Court has the option to issue a summons for the defendant to appear at a later court or trial date.

When a lawyer files the motion to recall or quash and the Judge grants to the motion, then the defendant does not have to go to jail for the bench warrant.

Can a Maryland Bench Warrant Be Dropped?

A bench warrant cannot be dropped by anyone other than a Maryland Judge. Dropping a bench warrant is not in the hands or at the discretion of the prosecutors or State’s Attorney, but decided by the Judge.

Typically, it the Judge that issued the warrant that will rule on the bench warrant request for recall. This means that the issuing bench warrant Judge will make the decision whether to recall or grant the motion to quash the bench warrant.

Will I Receive a Bench Warrant If I Don’t Show Up For a Traffic Ticket?

There are two types of traffic tickets in Maryland; Payable and Must Appear. To determine if the tickets issued are “must appear” or “payable,” look at the tickets and there will be either a fine amount or the words “must appear” printed on the ticket (towards the lower right side of the printout).

Failing to appear for a payable traffic ticket, like a speeding ticket or stop sign violation will not result in a bench warrant.

Instead, the Court will notify the Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) and the MVA will suspend the driver’s privilege to drive. The words “failure to comply – suspension” will appear at the bottom of the ticket on Maryland Judiciary Case Search.

As long as the ticket does unpaid or a new trial date is not requested, the driver’s license will be suspended.

If a driver is issued a must appear traffic ticket and fails to appear, then the Court will issue a bench warrant.

The Court will probably order that the bail be set by the commissioner when the individual is arrested for the bench warrant. Bail for a fail to appear bench warrant can vary by county and differ based on the defendant’s criminal background.

Bench Warrant Vs Arrest Warrant

A “Bench Warrant” is issued by a Judge for failing to appear. An “arrest warrant” is issued by a Judge or commissioner for an initial criminal charge.

How Long Does a Bench Warrant Last?

A bench warrant will last forever or until the person is arrested or a Judge recalls the bench warrant. Maryland bench warrants do not go away just because time has passed.

Therefore, if you try to avoid the bench warrant or being arrested by the police, the warrant will not go away.

You may also get arrested in another State for a bench warrant issued by a Maryland Judge. Maryland will have to decide if they want to extradite you for the bench warrant.

Filing a Motion to Recall Bench Warrant in Maryland

Filing a motion to recall a bench warrant is one of the smartest things a defendant or individual can do. If a person missed a court date or failed to appear for a legitimate reason or there is an explanation, then the Court will consider those facts.

Also, if a person have a bench warrant and shows the court that they are taking the charges seriously, the Judge will often give some consideration to someone with a bench warrant and recall the warrant.

Warrant Active 300x210 - Maryland Bench Warrant: How Does It Work, Process and Recalling the Warrant?Bench Warrant Maryland Search

The easiest way to find a bench warrant Maryland search is online at the Maryland Judiciary Case Search. Visit the site, input the person’s name and the system will tell you if there is an active bench warrant.

Warrant Case Maryland

A warrant case in Maryland is serious and could result in an individual being arrested.

What Happens If Arrested for a Bench Warrant in Maryland?

If you are arrested for a bench warrant in Maryland, the police officer will take you to a Maryland court commissioner.

The commissioner will review your case and your background and decide if you should be held until a bench warrant hearing before a Judge on the next business day or release you on another form of pretrial release.

Motion to Quash Warrant in Maryland

What is a motion to quash a bench warrant. Quash means to cancel, reverse rescind. It is an old english and latin term that means to “cancel.”

That is exactly what you want the Judge to do, cancel the bench warrant. So how does that happen? A lawyer will file a motion to quash the bench warrant for your case.

In that motion, the lawyer will explain why the motion should be quashed in legal terms and provide information about you and maybe why you missed or failed to appear for the trial date.

Failure to Appear in Court for Traffic Ticket Maryland

Failing to appear for a traffic ticket in Maryland may result in an issuance of a bench warrant, but it depends on the type of traffic ticket you’re facing.

A payable ticket, which are tickets for offenses like speeding and using a phone to text, are considered payable. Payable tickets will not result in a bench warrant.

Instead, if you fail to appear for a payable ticket, then the Court will advised the MVA that you did not show up to Court and issued a Failure to Comply – Suspension.

This means the MVA will suspended your driver’s license until you pay the ticket.

If you fail to appear for a must appear ticket, then the Court will issue a bench warrant for your arrest.

Motion to Recall Warrant Form

A motion to recall a bench warrant is called a Motion to Quash a Bench Warrant. A lawyer will draft the motion to recall a warrant or motion to quash and file with the appropriate court and Judge.

The Judge will consider the motion and rule on the motion to recall the bench warrant. It usually take about 7 business days before a Judge will rule on the motion.

If the motion is granted, then the Court will issue a summons and order you to appear in Court by way of mailing you a new notice.

How a Maryland Bench Warrant Lawyer Help?

A Maryland bench warrant lawyer can file the necessary motions with the Court to request they recall the warrant for your arrest. Maryland criminal defense attorney Randolph Rice has filed hundreds of motions to recall bench warrants throughout Maryland.

If you have a pending bench warrant for your arrest, contact his office today to speak with a lawyer and get your warrant recalled.


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