News & Advice

What Happens When Someone Doesn’t Show Up To Court?

What Happens When Someone Doesn't Show Up To Court?

When someone doesn’t show up to court, it is known as a failure to appear (FTA) and can have serious legal consequences. The specific consequences of an FTA can vary depending on the jurisdiction and the circumstances of the case, but some potential outcomes include following:

  1. An arrest warrant may be issued: If the defendant fails to appear in court, the judge may issue an arrest warrant, which authorizes law enforcement officers to arrest the defendant and bring them to court.
  2. Bail may be forfeited: If the defendant posted bail to be released from custody before their trial, the bail might be forfeited if the defendant fails to appear in court. This means that the court will keep the bail money, and the defendant may be required to pay the full bail amount to the court.
  3. Additional charges may be filed: Depending on the case’s jurisdiction and circumstances, the defendant may be charged with additional crimes or offenses for failing to appear in court.
  4. Driver’s license may be suspended: In some jurisdictions, the defendant’s driver’s license may be suspended if they fail to appear in court.
  5. Contempt of court: The defendant may be held in contempt of court for failing to appear, which can result in fines, imprisonment, or other penalties.

A failure to appear in court can have serious legal consequences and significantly impact a case’s outcome. It’s essential to attend all required court hearings and to comply with the terms of any bail or other legal obligations to avoid an FTA and the potential consequences that come with it.