If you have violated your written promise to go to/appear in court, you will be guilty of a misdemeanor/misconduct. The person is termed as failure to appear (FTA). Failure to appear is a breach of the law as per judicial laws and it may result in judicial charges, an arrest warrant, fines, and other judiciary penalties. When someone knowingly fails to appear in court, or has been agreed, to appear in court, a judge utilizing all his authorities, can take a few different courses of action against the person under the Virginia Code. The penalty of failing to appear in court varies from minor to a major crime. Failure to appear in court is considered as a separate offense. Even if the defendant (the accused) is not found guilty or that he was arrested for the original charge, is dropped, yet a judge may enforce the penalties Under Virginia Code § 19.2-73. A failure to appear can involve a jury services, a civil case, a traffic court appointment or a criminal case.
Failure to appear for traffic court case is a breach of the written promise to go to court on a given date and time. The accused can be penalized for the offense even if he is not found guilty of the under custody or even if the case is discharged. Failure to appear can be considered a misbehaving offense in some jurisdictions. When court holds on record of being failure to appear or when a person being unsuccessful to appear in court for a awaiting proceeding, a bench warrant might be issued in his/her name.
A bench warrant is equivalent to an arrest warrant and it is issued by the judge of the court. The bench warrant is issued with the purpose to arrest and restrain an accused who failed to appear in court for his pending action. Once a bench warrant is issued, Law enforcement possesses the right to immediately arrest the person, wherever he/she is located.
Failure to appear can also cause suspension of your license. In many jurisdictions, to clear out a failure to appear charges, the accused is mandated to pay the original amount for the citation and adding up the penalty fees for the same.
Failure to appear is applicable to violations of jury services requirements. In United States it’s compulsory for all the citizens by the law to fulfill jury duty services from time to time unless a lawful excuse has been approved by the proper judicial authorities. This is mandatory for citizens above eighteen. A failure to appear for jury duty services, may lead to a bench warrant which is issued for the arrest of the person who failed to abide by the law of court. In such cases Failure to appear may also result in punishable fines.
In a civil case, Failure to appear led to slightly different result than those in other similar kind of cases. The person who has filed the court case i.e. plaintiff, if fails to appear in court, the case may be dismissed, thereby forfeiting or taking away the chance to file the legal case in the future again.