What to Do If You Have a Warrant in Pinellas County, Florida

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If you have an outstanding warrant in Pinellas County, Florida, you’ve come to the right place. Thousands of people like you have outstanding warrants, despite having straightened their lives out. Whether you missed a court case or violated your misdemeanor probation, you can take steps to avoid arrest with the help of a criminal defense attorney. Common reasons for outstanding arrest warrants in Pinellas County, FL include:

  • Bench warrant
  • Direct file warrant from the State Attorney’s Office
  • Failure to appear (FTA) at court
  • Fugitive extradition warrant
  • Juvenile pick up order
  • Probable cause arrest warrant
  • Violation of probation (VOP) warrant

What Should I Do If I Have a Warrant in Pinellas County, FL?

Act Fast

If you come in contact with the police, you will be arrested and taken to jail.  If you live out of state, you can be brought back through a process called extradition. This is not time to sit back and wait to see what happens. The state may already be in the process of filing a new criminal charge. Take control and help yourself by contacting a lawyer as soon as possible. Although an attorney can fix warrants that have existed for years, every day that passes makes it a harder task.

Contact an Attorney 

To fix a warrant in Pinellas County, you need the support of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Whether your warrant has existed for weeks or years, an attorney can help. The goal is always to avoid returning to Pinellas County and to avoid jail time. With the best lawyers, they’ll be straight-forward from the start if they don’t think that’s a realistic goal in your case. Within minutes of consultation, they can usually determine whether they can realistically resolve an old warrant.

Show You’re Taking the Right Steps

It’s always beneficial to show you’ve been taking steps to fix your wrongs and straighten up your life. This could be anything from getting married and having kids to attending counseling, rehab and AA meetings. Providing document evidence of taking these steps goes a long way in showing you deserve leniency. Evidence could be a signed form from the organizer of a meeting or rehab, a letter from your church, or a recommendation from your employer. Often, a negative drug test can be a big help.  And, in many cases, the court system simply wants you to pay what you owe.

What to Do If You Have a Warrant for Missing Court?

Many people panic realizing they missed court or failed to get there on the given date for various reasons. In this situation, a criminal defense attorney will file a motion with the court to withdraw the warrant. You can help your case by gathering evidence that backs up your claims. For example, if you have a medical condition that prevented you from getting to court, then a doctor’s note or medical record can help. 

If your case is from years or even decades ago, excuses don’t have much power. Instead, you’ll have to admit your wrongs and show you want to do the right thing. You’ll need to appear in person to resolve the charge or use a plea in absentia (PIA) to pay off any fines and/or court costs. A criminal defense attorney will then agree a deal with the prosecutor at the Office of the State Attorney or the court before filing the motion to withdraw the warrant. By working out the deal in advance, the process is usually fairly straight-forward.

  • Contact a criminal defense attorney.
  • Prepare evidence of any reason you have for missing court.
  • Take steps to show the court that you are serious about fixing the problem

Read this guide on Pinellas County warrants for failure to appear in court.

What to Do If You Have a Warrant for Violating Your Misdemeanor Probation (VOP)?

Many people have warrants in Pinellas County, FL, for giving up on probation or failing to appear. Whether it’s been months or years since the violation, with some effort and attorney support, there is usually a solution. A criminal defense attorney will pull up the VOP report and review what conditions are outstanding. If you can fulfill these conditions, provide evidence for why you violated your probation or admit your fault, then the attorney will work out a deal with the judge and prosecutor. Once the deal is prepared, an attorney will prepare a PIA. In most cases, if you follow these steps, the judge will agree to withdraw the warrant alongside a $115 VOP fine. Usually, you won’t even need to return to Florida to resolve the case as everything can be completed through the mail.

  • Contact a criminal defense attorney.
  • Fulfill your remaining probation conditions, while your attorney works out a deal with the judge and prosecutor. 
  • Pay your fines and court costs and complete any outstanding conditions of your probation.

What to Do If You Have a Felony Warrant for Missing Court or Violating Probation?

Fixing felony warrants in Pinellas County for missing court is a difficult task if years have passed. Failing to appear in court is controlled by Florida Statute § 843.15. This statute provides for a new crime of failure to appear (FTA). If the underlying charge is a felony, the FTA charge is a third-degree felony. Sadly, for felony warrants, you’ll most likely have to turn yourself in to the Pinellas County Jail. 

Thankfully, there are some options: An attorney may be able to prepare a deal that reduces your charge to a misdemeanor and avoid court. You should also prepare and provide any evidence that can show you’ve straightened your life out—for example, attending rehab or counseling. A criminal defense attorney will then draft a PIA and ask you to sign it before sending it to the court. Typically, the warrant then gets withdrawn while you’ll need to pay the fine and court costs. This ideal scenario requires a lot of attorney work, but won’t require you to return to Pinellas County. 

Alternatively, preparing a plea deal with the judge or prosecutor before you surrender on the warrant can help resolve the case in the courtroom, on the spot - avoiding jail and clearing your name.

  • Contact a criminal defense attorney.
  • Turn yourself in to the Pinellas County Jail.
  • Provide evidence of you correcting your wrongs - for example, counseling or rehab.
  • Sign a PIA and pay the fine and court costs. 
  • Work out a plea deal with the judge or prosecutor to avoid jail.

Additional Resources for Warrants in Pinellas County, FL 

Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney for a Warrant in Pinellas County, FL Today:

If you have a warrant in Pinellas County, you could be arrested at any time and any place. To avoid this time-consuming and stressful process, contact a criminal defense attorney for warrants in Pinellas County, Florida.

St Petersburg Criminal Defense Attorney

5858 Central Ave suite c

St. Petersburg, FL 33707

(727) 381-2300


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