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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27104
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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what if court date is a saturday, do I have to call them or

Customer Question

what if court date is a saturday, do I have to call them or can i wait until they figure it out and call me??
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for using JustAnswer!

If a court date is scheduled on Saturday, YOU should call the court NOW to confirm/clarify. Good luck and best wishes for better days ahead.

I hope that you find this information to be helpful and this answer to be ACCEPTable!
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i need more info: why is it my responsibility to call them I didn't schedule the court date, the courts did. what can they do i have the paper they gave me with the date they issued so why should i be held responsible for their mistake
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
You never know, they may be holding court on Saturday. It is possible in some places. Alternatively, there may be a clerical error and it's much easier to clean it up/clear it up now.

Even if there was a clerical/scheduling error, your ticket will not be dismissed.

Again, it's much easier to be proactive, make a phone call, and straighten it out now than deal with headaches after the fact.

It's just a phone call.

Hope this helps!
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i went to the courthouse on saturday and it was locked up - i thought the same thing you did that maybe they started something new that i was unaware of so just to be on the safe side and to avoid a failure to appear i went up there but it was closed so I was just going to wait and see what happens - and by the way, its not a ticket, the charge was theft 50>500 and i didn't think it would be dismissed, i just don't feel like its my responsibility to fix their mistake, they sure wouldn't be fixing mine!! i just wondered how they would handle this. note: i called the court clerk twice and left messages on their voicemail but never got a returned phone call so as far as i am concerned i made an effort before the date arrived but got nothing in return
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
My personal disclaimer is that I hate clerk voice mail. There is nothing to prevent you from calling the court and asking to speak with the court administrator. In that phone call, you can give your case number, explain how a court date was set for a Saturday, explain how you've twice called the court and left voice mails about this and the voice mails have not been returned and you simply want to know when it is that you should appear in court.

The worst case scenario for you is that your court dates comes and goes, the problem is not corrected, and a bench warrant is issued for your arrest.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
ok, i don't think we are on the same page, the court date has come and gone. just say you had a client come to you and tell you that they went to court on the day the clerk assigned them to go and it just so happened that it was a saturday and when this person got down to the court house he found it all locked up and closed so he returned home and did nothing. then say he was driving and got pulled over, and was arrested because there was an outstanding warrant. now this person is out of jail after posting bond and comes to you for legal representation. what defense will you offer to provide him, will you argue the case due to the fact that your client did as instructed - how would you handle it? i know this is getting more complicated and more in depth, so i am willing to pay more than 15 should my question be answered completely - thanks!
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
Have you been arrested on new charges or just on the outstanding warrant from the court date that's come and gone?

Edited by JB Umphrey on 5/17/2010 at 11:12 AM EST
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i have not been arrested on anything and i don't have an outstanding warrant this is a current situation, my court date was this past saturday 05/15/10 i am just trying to decide if i want to call them this morning or let it ride and see what happens
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
The most prudent thing to do is call this morning. Letting it ride can result in the arrest warrant, being arrested at the wrong time, and it will cost more money.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Relist: Inaccurate answer.
she did not answer the question i asked her, she gave advice and her opinion instead - i want an answer from the legal standpoint, not anyones opinion or advice
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 7 years ago.
The answer is that if the court is not contacted a bench warrant will be issued for failure to appear on the underlying charge.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i asked that someone else answer the question please
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.

While I can answer the question, I can also tell you that the previous expert was right on target.

The courtroom where you are supposed to appear may not have gotten the same date you did and may not know that any mistake was made on your notice. The person who notifies defendants to come to court is likely to be from a different criminal justice agency elsewhere in the courthouse than the clerk who keeps records for the judge in the courtroom where you are supposed to show up. While a clerical error was certainly made on your notice paper, you can't assume what employee made it and that everybody in the court is on the same page you are with regard to the date of your appearance.

Do yourself a big favor and call the courthouse today and explain the situation to the court clerk. Ask when your case is really on the calendar. Don't get hung up on why you have to do it, because the answer is simple: you are a defendant on a case and under court mandate. They are not. You're the one who stands to get in trouble if you ignore your court obligation. They will not. It's about covering your tail.

At this point, if it's their mistake and you are proactive, even if the case was on today and a warrant has already issued, if you went in tomorrow with your paperwork you will look very good to the court, and you should be in no trouble at all. But if you don't straighten it out, and the court doesn't notice the error either, then way down the road when it all catches up with you, their mistake is not going to protect you any more.

If the clerk of the court says you're not on any calendar, don't forget about this. Periodically keep checking. You know you've got a case, so you can expect that somewhere along the line the court will remember it too.


If I've helped, please click the green Accept button so I can get credit for my work.

This thread will not close and you can always use it to get clarification.This is informational only and is NOT legal advice. There is no attorney-client relationship. You are advised to consult an attorney in your State for specific legal advice.