A summons is a legal document: a written order to appear in court. Summons may be issued for traffic violations or criminal offenses. After a complaint is filed, the court clerk issues a summons which is signed by the clerk, under the court seal, regarding when and where to appear to answer the alleged charge, including:
- The name of the court
- The names of the party/parties involved
- The name and address of the plaintiff’s attorney (if applicable)
- The date and time for court appearance
- The address of the court
How is a summons served in Oklahoma?
Depending on circumstances, a summons may be served in several different ways. If by mail, it “shall be accomplished by mailing a copy of the summons and petition by certified mail, return receipt requested and delivery restricted to the addressee.” It may also be served by personal delivery, often by a process server who is bonded by the State of Oklahoma and licensed to serve summons in the county in which the license was issued.
What is the difference between a summons and a warrant?
A summons is used to inform you that you are required to appear in court. It is typically used when the police and prosecutors believe that you pose no public danger and will, in fact, show up to court. Most summons are issued for traffic offenses or nonviolent misdemeanors. A warrant, on the other hand, is essentially an order that requires the police to arrest you. Warrants are most often issued for those who have committed or allegedly committed a felony or violent crime, have failed to respond to an earlier summons (thereby committing a failure-to-appear offense) or are considered a flight risk.
If you know there is a warrant for your arrest, do not ignore it. It’s in your best interest to put a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side immediately. By turning yourself in with the assistance and legal representation of a lawyer, you may be able to reduce bail or even get released on your own recognizance.
Learn more about how Patriot Law can help you
If you have been served with a summons or a warrant and are concerned about the ramifications, talk to attorney RJ Harris. We have helped protect the rights of people throughout Norman, Oklahoma and surrounding communities. To schedule a time to discuss your needs, please call us at (405) 979-0179 or contact us online.