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If I have an outstanding warrant, what should I do?

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North Carolina DWI Lawyer Brad Smith of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question: If I have an outstanding warrant, what should I do?

Question: "If I have an outstanding warrant, what should I do?"

Brad Smith:

If you have an outstanding warrant the best thing you could do is probably contact a lawyer to go ahead and prearrange what the conditions of your release will be.

If you have an outstanding warrant you are not going to indefinitely be able to run from the charges and they are going to automatically go away.

When there is a warrant for your arrest that means that law enforcement are trying to serve that warrant on you.

And if it’s served on you when you’re working, when you’re jogging down the street or driving in your car then when you go in front of a judicial official it looks a whole lot better if you actually turned yourself in on the warrant.

In other words it doesn’t look like you have been running from the warrant or ignoring the warrant.

Because bond in North Carolina is set based on two factors: whether or not you are a flight risk and whether or not you are a danger.

And when you go and turn yourself in, you walk into the sheriff’s office and turn yourself in on a charge, it is very difficult for any sort of judicial official to make the finding that you’re a flight risk. Because if you were a flight risk you certainly wouldn’t go down to the sheriff’s office or down to the jail to turn yourself in on a criminal charge.

So when you have a prearranged bond condition or a prearranged condition of release it sort of limits the amount of time ultimately you will spend in jail.

In other words, you go in, get processed, and there has already been an agreement as to your bond, you get out of jail that much quicker.