Got warrants? Stay out of the courthouse!

Yesterday was one of those very strange days at the courthouse. While there for a family law child support matter, I saw no fewer than four people get arrested for having outstanding warrants. If you are going to avail yourself of the family law court system to, for instance, try to establish parental rights, you may want to take care of your outstanding warrants. Otherwise you face the possibility that the law-abiding parent may call the police and let the police know that you’re going to be at the courthouse at a specific time and that you have warrants out for your arrest.

Yesterday that is exactly what happened.

In one of the cases, a single mother who has been raising her now five year old with no support whatsoever from the Father was summoned to court to defend an action by paternal grandparents for visitation. This young mother was terrified that her son may be forced to spend time with people she considers dangerous and unfit. There happen to be outstanding drug and alcohol related warrants out for their arrest. Yesterday, they were taken into custody.

In another instance, a man was attending a child support hearing when officers came to request his identification. Upon investigation they found a warrant for failure to appear in an assault matter. He was taken into police custody.

The moral of the story is twofold. First, if you know that the opposing party in your family law case has a warrant out for their arrest you may consider alerting the Baliff for the sheriffs department of existing warrant. Second, if there is a warrant out for your arrest, you may want to take care of this before you go into family court. Otherwise you may face being arrested.