Leaving the Country with a Pending Trial Date? What NJ Criminal Defense Attorneys Want You to Know Before You Go.

New Jersey Criminal Lawyers Schwartz Posnock

During the time before your criminal trial takes place, the conditions of your bail may restrict your travel capabilities. No matter what your reason for traveling may be, your ability to depart from the United States and re-enter will depend on the crime you were charged with, the laws governing your bail, and the personal tendencies of your assigned judge.

Some courts label individuals charged with certain crimes as “flight risks,” because they might try to flee the jurisdiction in which they are charged. These crimes can include financial wrongdoing or more violent crimes. In the latter case, the accused may decide to take the risk to escape, viewing the reward as greater than the risk. If you do this, you face additional charges, including bail jumping, as well as unfavorable jury instructions. Your case may even be tried in your absence.  If your judge considers you a flight risk, travel restrictions may be a condition of your bail or your passport might be sacrificed until the trial is completed. Travel restrictions vary immensely, but can include restrictions on international travel.

If you are not deemed a flight risk, you will likely not be held to any travel restrictions. However, you will likely have several scheduled hearings up until the start date of your trail and occasional meetings with your probation officer or bail supervisor. You will not want to miss any of these meetings, because you may face flight charges or have bail revoked.

If you intend to leave the country, you should contact a NJ Criminal Defense Attorney immediately to make a persuasive case to your judge regarding why you should be allowed to leave the country temporarily. It is better to contact a lawyer than to face the nightmare scenario of flight charges.

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