FTA Warrant Removal
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FTA Warrant Removal
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At The Law Office of Ahmad R. Crews, every client is treated seriously and with respect, no matter their case. With direct access to head attorney Ahmad R. Crews throughout the course of your case, you can trust that Attorney Crews will take care to understand the ins and outs of your situation and provide the experienced and professional legal guidance you deserve. For more information on how to resolve a FTA warrant following a traffic citation, contact The Law Office of Ahmad R. Crews today.
What Is a Failure-to-Appear Warrant?
If you receive a citation or ticket, you have a responsibility to appear in court. A Failure to Appear (“FTA”) is a serious order that can result in a bench warrant in Georgia, which is often issued against individuals for failing to appear in court, not paying a fine they were supposed to pay, or driving on a suspended license. If you miss your court date for a criminal or traffic citation, not only will a judge issue a bench warrant for your arrest, but your driver’s license will also be further suspended.
Keep in mind that according to O.C.G.A. § 17-7-90, a Georgia bench warrant may be issued for a person’s arrest when that person fails to appear in court after:
- receiving notice of an impending court date in open court,
- a notice was mailed to the person’s last known address which contains the court date, time, and location, or
- the person has been notified of an impending court date personally, in writing, by a court official, or an officer of the court.
Note that an FTA suspension is effective 28 calendar days after the Department of Driver Services receives notice about the individual’s failure to appear.
Removing a FTA Warrant
Depending on the jurisdiction, there are a few ways to satisfy an FTA. You will remain in FTA status until you pay the applicable fines and resolve the matter before the judge, which you may do by scheduling a FTA hearing, where the judge will review your FTA charge.
The courthouse in Atlanta is located at 150 Garnett Street, Atlanta, Georgia 30303. When you arrive at the courthouse, proceed through security, and go to any one of the windows in the main lobby (except for Window 7), where you can check in and be put on a calendar.
In the courtroom, you will either appear before the judge or be asked to pay a $100 fine for missing your original court date. If you appear before the judge, the judge may consider any potential mitigating circumstances for missing court, such as if you were in the hospital or jail at the time of the original court date. Be sure to bring all relevant documentation to show why you missed court.
Keep in mind that, if relevant to your case, law enforcement officers have procedures in place that govern the collection of physical evidence. If you feel your Fourth Amendment rights were violated during any seizure of physical evidence that hindered your case, contact an attorney to file a suppression motion seeking to exclude the evidence from admission at trial before the judge. Additionally, a suppression motion of a wiretap can also result in the suppression of illegally obtained conversations when the police have more traditional forms of surveillance and do not pursue them.
If you are asked to pay the $100 FTA fee instead of appearing before the judge, following payment you will receive three things:
- a Form 912 FTA Withdrawal to be submitted to the Georgia DDS to reinstate your driver’s license;
- a copy of the receipt indicating that you satisfied the FTA; and
- a “Fail Safe” letter, which states that your arrest warrant has been cancelled.
Note that the “Fail Safe” letter is very important because it helps you avoid any problems when you drive to DDS to turn in your Form 912. If an officer stops you on the way to DDS, show the officer both the Form 912 and your Fail Safe letter. You will also need to bring proof of identity and pay a $210 fee at DDS to successfully reinstate your license.
Let The Law Office of Ahmad R. Crews Help. Call (404) 250-3285!
While FTA warrants can be resolved in a matter of a few legal steps, knowing how to navigate these steps can be difficult. If you have received a FTA and/or bench warrant, contact The Law Office of Ahmad R. Crews today to figure out your next legal steps in removing the warrant.
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