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Failure to Appear

Bail Jumping, or Failure to Appear in Court

Bail Jumping in New YorkThe criminal justice process takes time. While you are waiting the resolution of your case, you may be released on bail. If you are released on bail, there will be certain conditions you must follow. You also must appear for any required court date. Failure to appear can result in the forfeiture of bail money, as well as a separate criminal charge for bail jumping.

There are many legitimate reasons why you may miss a court date.

A New York bail jumping lawyer at Bukh Law Firm, PLLC. can represent you if you have missed your required court appearance, and will work hard to help you minimize or avoid any potential consequences of not showing up in court.

 

New York Failure to Appear Law

In the state of New York, a bench warrant may be issued for your arrest as soon as you fail to come to a required court appearance. However, there is a 30 day grace period before you are charged with jumping bail. If you contact a New York failure to appear attorney as soon as possible, your defense counsel may be able to help you make things right before you end up being taken into custody or charged with an additional criminal offense.

The specific offense you can be charged with for failure to appear depends upon the underlying crime your court appearance was related to. For example:

 

  • Bail jumping in the third degree is a Class A misdemeanor under New York Penal Code Section 215.55. You will be charged with this offense if you were released from custody in any criminal case and you could face up to a year of jail time if convicted.
  • Bail jumping in the second degree is a Class E felony under New York Penal Code Section 215.56. You will be charged with this offense if you were released from custody pending trial for felony charges. You could face up to four years of prison time if you are convicted of jumping bail.
  • Bail jumping in the first degree is a Class D non-violent felony under New York Penal Code Section 215.57.   You can be charged with this offense for missing a court date in relation to an A or B felony charge. You could face up to seven years

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Any penalties for failure to appear are separate from penalties for the offense you were supposed to go to court in relation to.

To avoid compounding your legal problems, take affirmative actions with the help of a New York City criminal defense lawyer as soon as you miss a court date.

 

Federal Laws on Failure to Appear

When facing federal criminal charges, you also have the obligation to appear at all required federal court proceedings. If you do not come to court when required, you could be charged with a failure to appear under 18 U.S. Code Section 3146.

Just as in New York, the federal government imposes harsher penalties if you do not come to court when dealing with serious felony charges, as opposed to skipping a court case related to a more minor crime. For example:

 

  • If you miss a court date in connection with a charge that carries a penalty of 15 or more years in prison, you could face up to 10 years incarceration for bail jumping.
  • If you miss a court date in connection with a charge that could result in a five years incarceration, your maximum penalty for jumping bail is five years.
  • For missing court in relation to a misdemeanor, maximum penalties are one year
  • For missing court due to a felony, maximum penalties include two years

 

How a Failure to Appear Lawyer Can Help You

There are affirmative defenses to an accusation of failure to appear. Often, a NYC bail jumping lawyer can prevent things from even moving that far by helping you make things right as soon as a court date is missed. If, however, you are charged with bail jumping, your attorney will help you to present a strong case to try to avoid an additional prison sentence.

Bukh Law Firm, PLLC. has extensive experience with failure to appear cases. Call today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help.

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