Summary: Free Traffic Court Tips for the Orange County courthouses written by an Attorney who has resolved hundreds of LA and Orange County warrant cases. How to look up case info, where to find warrant info, how to set a court date in Orange County, how to clear dui warrants in Orange county.
How To Search For Warrants in Orange County Criminal or Traffic Courts: The Orange County Sheriffs Office has a free online search engine for finding criminal and traffic court warrants, and their associated case #. But if you want real information on why a warrant was issued, you need to look up the case at the Orange County's Superior Court Web site. Orange County has excellent on line access to criminal and traffic court issues.
How to Clear DUI Warrants in Orange County: If you miss a court date on a DUI case in Orange County (Vehicle Code section 23152), the court will normally issue a bench warrant with a bail set at $10,000-15,000. If you fail to complete the sheriff's work program or First Offender DUI classes, it is a slightly different problem than a missed court date. The court will normally revoke probation and issue an arrest warrant. In both situations, the defendant or an attorney for the defendant must go to court, make an appearance and request that the warrant be recalled, and a hearing set to deal with the problem that caused the warrant. Although jail time on a warrant is possible, if the defendant takes care of the warrant voluntarily, the chances of a good outcome are increased.
Call the Court Before Going to Confirm Location:
Many cases in Laguna and other small Orange County courthouses get sent to the Newport Courthouse, and the change will not appear online. To avoid going to the wrong courthouse, call the court clerk in advance to confirm location.
Laguna Niguel Courthouse Closed: The Laguna Niguel (not Laguna Hills) Courthouse was closed in 2008. Most cases were transferred to the Laguna Hills Courthouse. Pending warrants are still pending, just in a different place. Call the court clerk in Laguna Hills before going to court to verify the location and date.
Look Up Your Case Before Going to Court: the Orange County Superior Court provides excellent on line access to criminal and traffic court information. And the Orange County Sheriffs Office has a great free warrant search form. From these sources you can get lots of information on your case before you get to court.
For Drivers License Info, Contact DMV Driver Safety: To get information about the status of your Drivers License in California, the best place to call if the Department of Motor Vehicles Driver Safety Office in Irvine. The DMV Driver Safety Office telephone number is: (949) 440-4416.
Failure to Appear Charges can be Infractions or Misdemeanors: a failure to appear charge under California Vehicle Code section 40508a can be a misdemeanor or an infraction. The vehicle code actually says it is a misdemeanor punishable by 6 months in jail, but the judges of Orange County Courts like Westminster Courthouse sometimes consider it an infraction in exchange for a defendant's guilty plea. Before pleading guilty to a failure to appear, it is important to know whether the FTA is a misdemeanor or an infraction. Traffic Court FTA Defendants can ask the judge to reduce a VC 40508a to an infraction and the judge can say yes or no.
Use Google Maps in Court Trials: If you have a Traffic Court Trial over a moving violation in Orange County, the judge will allow you to present a map of the area. The best maps currently available are Google maps, which you ccan print or dispay in court on a projector. Use the maps to identify important point in the case, and your direction of travel.
Police Officers Do Not Show Up at the First Court Date:
If you want to fight a case or citation, don't expect it to happen at the first court appearance. And don't be surprised if the officer does not appear at the first court date. The judge will not hear evidence, such as an officer's or defendant's testimony at the Arraignment, which is the first court date. In most traffic court cases, the officer only needs to show up at a trial date, which is set after the defendant pleads not guilty.