In this article, we will explain the best process by which you can look up and find out whether or not you or someone you know has an active arrest warrant in Florida. However, before we do that, we will explain exactly what an active warrant is, and how it is different from other kinds of warrants.
What is an active arrest warrant?
An active arrest warrant in Florida is an authorization on behalf of the state of Florida that permits law enforcement officials to pursue and take into custody an individual named by the warrant. In order for an active warrant to be issued, a crime must first be committed. Once this is done, and police forces believe they know who was responsible, they must appear in a court of law, and swear under oath that they believe they know the individual responsible for the crime to the best of their knowledge and ability. In order for the warrant to be authorized, the judge or magistrate must be convinced that the police have probably cause to indicate a specific individual. Once this is done, the judge or magistrate will sign and authorize the warrant, granting police forces the ability to arrest the suspect.
An active warrant in Florida, like an arrest warrant, is issued only when a crime has been committed. This is different than a bench warrant. Bench warrants are generally only issued for reasons that deal with being in contempt of court, such as by not appearing for a scheduled hearing.
Arrest warrants do not expire, and remain active until the suspect has been arrested.
How can I find active arrest warrants for Florida?
The best place to start an active arrest warrant search in Florida is to utilize the Wanted Persons Search tool provided by the Florida Crime Information Center of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. You can find this tool at http://pas.fdle.state.fl.us/pas/person/displayWantedPersonsSearch.a, and it will provide all of the known details about individuals that are wanted under an active warrant in the state.
However, if you would prefer to find out the status or existence of an active warrant in person, you may do so either by visiting your local municipal court or sheriff’s office. You can locate these buildings by searching for “(County Name, Florida) sheriff’s office/municipal court.” Please be advised that some courts and offices will provide this information only to persons named by the warrant, and you may be required to present identification.
What should I do if I have an active warrant in Florida?
Broadly speaking, it is best to turn yourself over to authorities as quickly as possible to prevent further legal trouble. However, we are not authorized to give legal advice, and the very first thing that you should do when facing a Florida active warrant is to consult and retain the services of a defense attorney.