Desk Appearance Ticket General Information

A desk appearance ticket means you were arrested in New York City. In New York City, the NYPD can arrest you and bring you to see a judge right away or they can issue you a desk appearance ticket (DAT) which requires you to see a criminal court judge on a later date. This is often mutually beneficial. With a desk appearance ticket, you aren't rushed in front of a judge without time to prepare a defense, and the City of New York doesn't have to spend money in connection with your temporary incarceration while you wait.

A desk appearance ticket signals the start of a criminal case. Sometimes, it can be resolved on your first court date (listed in the middle of the desk appearance ticket) or you might have to come back to court several times. If you are found guilty, you could face up to 1 year in jail for a class A misdemeanor, up to 90 days for a class B misdemeanor, and up to 15 days for most violations. If you are convicted, you could get a permanent criminal record which can lead to employment, immigration, and international travel problems. Additionally, depending on the circumstances of your case, there is a danger of civil liability for something related to what you were arrested for.

Common Desk Appearance Charges

  • 155.25, 165.40, or 165.15 for theft
  • 165.40, Possession of Stolen Property
  • 145.00 for property damage
  • 220.03 for drug possession
  • 221.10 or 221.05 for Possession of Marijuana
  • 120.00 for assault
  • 170.20 for possession of a fake ID or other document
  • VTL 511 for driving on a suspended license

Common Desk Appearance Ticket Court Locations

Understanding what a Desk Appearance Ticket is

Confusion surrounding a desk appearance ticket comes from the fact that there are numerous tickets that can be issued in New York City. A police officer can give you a summons (pink ticket), civil ticket, parking ticket, environmental ticket, traffic ticket, or desk appearance ticket. A desk appearance ticket is, by far, the most serious because it means that, unlike those other tickets, you were arrested and you're probably being charged with a crime. Your arresting officer may try to play off of this common confusion by remarking "don't worry - it's just a ticket". The best way to understand a desk appearance ticket and what it means is to think of it this way - if you got a desk appearance ticket, you were arrested and you are going to be prosecuted. So, properly dealing with a desk appearance ticket is a question of defending a criminal case. If you or a loved one received a desk appearance ticket in New York City, contact us for a case evaluation.

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