Bench Warrants in Arizona

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Bench Warrants in Arizona

In Arizona, a bench warrant can be issued by a judge, magistrate, commissioner, or justice of the peace when a defendant:

  • doesn’t show up for a scheduled court hearing (“Failure to Appear”).
  • doesn’t comply with a court-mandated order.
  • violates a term of their probation.
  • fails to pay court-ordered restitution.

A bench warrant allows a law enforcement officer to arrest the defendant. Police are able to come to the defendant’s residence, workplace, or anywhere else to make the arrest. As such, anyone who knows they have an active bench warrant should turn themself in rather than being arrested. After arrest or turning themself in, the defendant will meet with a judicial officer within 24 hours where their conditions for release will be considered.

A bench warrant remains valid until the defendant appears before the court that issued the warrant and is heard on that case.

To find out if you have an active warrant, visit this article: How to Look Up an Active Warrant

If your bench warrant is for Failure to Appear, your warrant will be on of these two options:

  • Failure to Appear in the First Degree (A.R.S. 13-2507) – This is issued for failing to appear for a court hearing regarding a felony charge. This violation is itself a class 5 felony, which can result in penalties up to and including six months to two and a half years in prison.
  • Failure to Appear in the Second Degree (A.R.S. 13-2506) – This is issued to for failing to appear for a court hearing regarding a misdemeanor or petty offense. This violation is a class 1 misdemeanor and can result in fines up to $2500 and/or six months in jail.


If you have an active bench warrant, reach out Rideout Law Group. We can help you fight the charges, properly surrender to the court, or petition to quash (legally void) the warrant.



With offices in Lake Havasu City and Scottsdale, our firm serves the entire state of Arizona, with a particular focus on criminal defense, family law, and juvenile cases.

Our goal is for the best outcome for your criminal case, which can include:

  • charges that are reduced or dropped.
  • top experts reviewing your case.
  • aggressive negotiations with the prosecution for plea bargains.
  • fines or probation in lieu of jail time.

At Rideout Law Group, our attorneys are able to expertly examine the evidence in your case to provide a strong strategy for argument that leads to an outcome that is most favorable to you. We have experience in all types of criminal cases for both adults and juveniles, with positive outcomes both in plea negotiations as well as jury trial settings.

Call us today for a free consultation at 480-584-3328.

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