Arrest warrants can be a scary and confusing topic, especially if you’re not familiar with the legal system in Canada. If you’ve received an arrest warrant or are worried that one may be issued against you, it’s important to have a good understanding of what an arrest warrant is, what it means, and what your options are.
If you’re facing an arrest warrant or have questions about the legal process, it’s essential to seek the advice and guidance of a qualified criminal defence lawyer.
In this blog, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about arrest warrants in Alberta, from what they are and how they’re issued to what happens if you ignore one and how a criminal defence lawyer can help.
We’ll also provide some tips on what you can do to protect your rights and avoid arrest warrants altogether. So, whether you’re dealing with an arrest warrant right now or just want to be prepared for the future, keep reading for all the information you need.
What Is An Arrest Warrant In Alberta?
An arrest warrant is a legal document issued by a judge or justice of the peace that authorizes law enforcement officers to arrest and detain an individual suspected of committing a crime. In Alberta, arrest warrants are issued when the police have reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed an offence.
The warrant provides law enforcement with the legal authority to enter a premises, search for the individual, and make an arrest. In Alberta, arrest warrants are governed by the Criminal Code of Canada and can be issued for a range of criminal offenses, from minor offenses to serious crimes such as murder or armed robbery.
To obtain an arrest warrant in Alberta, the police must provide a sworn statement to the judge that includes the facts and circumstances of the alleged offence. If the judge is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the individual has committed the offence, they will issue an arrest warrant.
Is An Arrest Warrant The Same As A Search Warrant?
While both types of warrants allow law enforcement officers to take action against a person suspected of committing a crime, they serve different purposes.
It is important to note that an arrest warrant is different from a search warrant. A search warrant is a court order that authorizes the police to search a particular location for evidence related to a suspected crime. It is issued by a judge or justice of the peace and typically contains information about the location to be searched, the evidence sought, and the legal authority for the search.
An arrest warrant is a legal document that authorizes law enforcement officers to arrest and detain a person suspected of committing a crime. It is issued by a judge or justice of the peace and typically contains information about the person to be arrested, the crime they are suspected of committing, and the legal authority for the arrest.
How Long Do Arrest Warrants Last In Alberta?
In Alberta, arrest warrants remain valid until they are executed by the police or are cancelled by a judge. Unlike some other types of warrants, such as search warrants, there is no set expiration date for arrest warrants in Alberta.
Once an arrest warrant is issued, the police will typically take steps to locate and apprehend the individual named in the warrant. This may involve conducting surveillance, searching public records, or interviewing family members, friends, and associates of the individual.
It’s essential to note that an outstanding arrest warrant can have severe consequences. The longer it remains unresolved, the greater the likelihood of facing legal and personal issues. It is in your best interest to seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defence lawyer as soon as possible if you have an outstanding warrant.
How To Find Out If You Have A Warrant For Your Arrest In Alberta
If you suspect that there may be an arrest warrant issued against you in Alberta, the best course of action is to verify your suspicions by checking with the authorities:
- Check with the local police department: You can call or visit your local police department and ask them if there are any active warrants under your name.
- Check with the Alberta Court System: You can also check with the Alberta Court System to see if there are any warrants or court orders under your name. You can either visit the courthouse in person or check online on the Alberta Courts website.
- Hire a criminal defence lawyer: If you suspect that you have a warrant for your arrest in Alberta, the best course of action is that you seek legal advice from a criminal defence lawyer. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and determine if there are any warrants issued against you.
Will I Get Stopped At The Airport If I Have A Warrant In Alberta?
In most cases, yes. You can’t travel with an arrest warrant in your name, the relevant authorities will stop you and may even detain you. However, there may be exceptions, and you might actually be able to travel. For example, if the warrant is related to a minor offence, the authorities may allow travel for a limited period of time.
Some airlines and border control officers may stop you from entering another country. This is because the Canadian authorities share information about outstanding warrants with other countries.
Even if you are travelling within Canada, you may get stopped by the police at the airport if they have a warrant for your arrest. They can detain you and take you into custody. Additionally, if you are on a no-fly list, you may face further restrictions.
Consult with a criminal defence lawyer in Alberta for advice on how to proceed if you have an outstanding arrest warrant and need to travel.
What Are The Consequences Of Having An Arrest Warrant?
An arrest warrant may result in several difficulties, including:
- Legal penalties: If you are caught with an outstanding warrant, you will likely be arrested and face legal penalties, including fines and potential imprisonment.
- Increased difficulty finding employment: Many employers conduct criminal background checks before hiring, and having an outstanding warrant on your record can make it more difficult to secure a job.
- Difficulty obtaining housing: Similar to employment, many landlords conduct background checks on potential tenants, and having an outstanding warrant can make it more difficult to find a place to live.
- Suspension of driver’s license: If the warrant is related to a traffic violation, your driver’s license may be suspended until the matter is resolved.
- Difficulty travelling: Depending on the severity of the warrant, you may be denied entry or exit to other countries or territories.
- Emotional stress: The fear of being arrested and the uncertainty surrounding the situation can take a toll on your mental health and cause significant emotional stress.
What To Do If You Have A Warrant In Alberta
If you have a warrant for your arrest in Alberta, it’s important to take immediate action to address the situation. The first step is to contact a criminal defence lawyer who can advise you on the best course of action.
Depending on the circumstances, you may need to turn yourself into the authorities, but a lawyer can help guide you through the process and protect your legal rights. They can also provide you with high-end defence services for the criminal charges pressed against you.
Remember, avoiding the situation will worsen it and increase the potential legal consequences.
About Slaferek Law
Slaferek Law is a criminal defence law firm based in Edmonton, Alberta, with a team of experienced lawyers who specialize in providing legal representation for clients facing criminal charges, including those related to arrest warrants.
The firm is committed to ensuring that clients receive the best possible legal representation and advice, with a focus on achieving the most favourable outcome for each individual case. Learn more about Slaferek Law.
Need a defence for criminal charges? Contact us now.