How long does it take for a Felony warrant to expire?


How long does it take for a Felony warrant to expire?

Does felony warrants ever expire? If there is an arrest warrant for a loved one or you, this is one question you should be asking. One might decide one day to hunt for a job after running away from charges against him or her. So, it’s better to know the truth about felony charges to take appropriate steps. In this post, we will look at everything there is to know about felony warrants, and if they genuinely do expire. Happy reading!

Felony and warrants: What’s the simple meaning?

Does felony warrants expire?

Felony is a serious crime. In countries like the United States of America, it is a crime that results in a one-year jail term or even a death sentence. Misdemeanor, on the other hand, is a crime that only attracts a fine. Punishment can also result in a shorter jail term, in this case.

A warrant can mean different things. But, since we are referring to legal issues, it’s a legal document that is issued by a government official to empower or authorize the police to enforce an arrest or search the premises of an individual considered a suspect.

The thing is a felony arrest warrant is usually tendered by a magistrate or judge, once the need to arrest an individual is determined based on an affidavit or sworn testimony that supports the petition for an arrest warrant issuing.

Bench warrant & Felony warrant: Is/are there any difference?

Bench warrants and felony warrants are used interchangeably by the public. But, these two terms are entirely different. To know the difference, one has to understand how both happen. What prompts both warrants?

Some matters result in the issuing of a bench warrant. These include failure to present one’s self in a court hearing, complying with judgment, or paying stipulated fine. These are factors that can lead to a bench warrant. The judge will then issue a subpoena that compels the offender to appear in the court hearing.

However, a felony warrant is different and triggered by other factors. It begins with the police department. In this case, they will request permission to arrest an individual considered to have committed a crime.

Read also: Does the CTA Hire Felons?

How A Felony Arrest Warrant Works

When you are caught committing or attempting to commit a crime that is when a law enforcement agent can arrest you. If not found in the act but suspected, permission would be requested for your arrest. Usually, they are considered arrest warrant and are issued by a judge in a competent court.

The judge is by law, obliged to issue a felony warrant once the law enforcement agent demonstrate that a serious crime was committed, by an individual. They must have cogent reason or conviction that you committed or connected to the crime.

Felony warrants, as earlier established, differs from other warrants. They are issued and bind on the offender irrespective of location. It only thing that can happen is the issuing state has the right to request for extradition of the defendant if he or she escapes to a different area.

Actions to take and not to take when there is a warrant for arrest you

Most people, on hearing that a warrant has been issued for their arrest, allow their emotions to get the best of them. If you, at anytime find yourself in this situation, stay calm. There are things you should and shouldn’t do in this type of situation. A wrong approach would complicate things.

Steps to take

  1. You heard there is a police arrest warrant for you. Have you confirmed yet or accepted the rumors to be true? Before you put yourself in a difficult situation, conduct a research to ascertain if this is true. You can conduct research online or personally call the police department in charge of that area to confirm. Don’t work based on assumption.
  2. If you affirm the warrant is real, arrange with your attorney to make yourself available at the police station. Not addressing the situation will not make the allegation or arrest warrant for go away.

Steps you shouldn’t take

  1. Do not make any attempt to run. Running will make the situation face than it was and increase the charges against you. Your jail term might increase with such attempt.
  2. Avoid entering into a military base if there is a warrant for your arrest. Your authorization to enter such vicinity will be revoked once an arrest warrant has been issued.
  3. Do not surrender yourself unless you have discussed with an attorney.
  4. Do not make any attempt to travel by air. Airport security would figure out if a warrant has been issued for your arrest.

Do Felony Warrants Expire? What you need to know

Felony warrants, as well as bench warrants, do not expire. Once issued, they can remain valid for decades until the suspect is arrested by the police. In another case, the court can issue what is called “countermanding the order.” This order is actually to revoke the warrant so the suspect can go without any harassment.

But most jurisdictions arrange for warrants to be revoked. That’s if one contacts them to arrange for him or her to surrender. But have in mind that no matter where one hides or travels to, felony warrants issued for his or her arrest will never change.

The thing is most people don’t even know they have an arrest warrant binding. Many have left the state or area the crime was committed and may not also remember anything. There are occasions where individuals are told they have a warrant by their employers. It happens after a thorough background check to satisfy the requirement of an insurance company or something else relating to work.

Insurance companies are always in the habit of requesting such investigations before admitting an individual. They want to be sure they are not dealing with a fugitive, probationer, parolee or someone who has a pending issue with a magistrate.

The Statute of Limitation on an arrest warrant

Can statute of limitation affect arrest warrant? The answer is no. There is no such thing on a bench or arrest warrant. Once issued, they remain active for many decades. Issuing of an arrest warrant indicates that the state has enough evidence to pursue the case against the offender.


Being charged with a crime is a serious issue, and should be treated as such. If you have an arrest warrant, try to respond appropriately. It is better to face the situation and resolve it once and for all than run away. Know that no matter the number of years, you still have to face the charges against you.