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A bench warrant is a common type of warrant issued in the state of Washington, and is unlike typical arrest warrants. A bench warrant is issued by a judge, which is why it is termed a “bench” warrant.

Bench warrants are usually issued in the event of:

  • Failure to appear in court
  • Failing to adhere to court orders issued to you
  • Failure to pay a fine for a misdemeanor offense

What Will Happen If I Am Issued A Bench Warrant?

A bench warrant gives any Washington police officer the right to arrest you and bring you in. For example, if you get pulled over for a routine traffic stop – for speeding or having a headlight out, or any other type of traffic infraction – and you have a bench warrant out on you, the officer who stopped you has an obligation to arrest you on the spot.

From there, the judge can release you or put you in jail, and will usually decide what to do based on your criminal history, what the warrant was issued for and how much of a flight risk you are.

Bench Warrant Penalties

  • Probation Violation
  • Jail time
  • Fines
  • Suspended driver’s license

A seasoned lawyer in the state of Washington may be able to have a bench warrant quashed in your absence, but you may need to appear in court depending on the severity of the crime for which the warrant was issued.

If you’ve been issued a bench warrant, having it quashed often requires the experience of an attorney. The Law Offices of Greene & Lloyd, PLLC can provide you with the solid defense you need to get rid of your bench warrant and clear your record. Call today to make an appointment for a consultation.


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