[wawr-uhnt, wor-]
warrant, in law, written order by an official of a court directed to an officer. The search warrant and the warrant of arrest are the most frequently used types. Warrants of attachment order the seizure of a defendant's goods pending trial or judicial determination of ownership and in certain other cases. Warrants are usually issued by a judge or court clerk. They are directed to sheriffs, marshals, constables, and other officers of the peace. The strictest compliance with legal forms and rules for serving a warrant is ordinarily necessary if it is to be effective.

In law, authorization in writing empowering a person to perform an act or execute an office. Arrest warrants are necessary (except in certain circumstances) for an arrest to be considered legal. Search warrants enh1 the holder to enter and search a property. Both are classes of judicial warrants. To obtain them, a complainant must provide an affidavit setting forth facts sufficient to satisfy the belief that a crime has been committed and that the accused is the guilty party (or, in the case of the search warrant, that the place to be searched will yield the expected evidence). Nonjudicial warrants include tax warrants (which provide the authority to collect taxes) and land warrants (which enh1 the holder to a specific tract of public land).

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Warrant has several meanings:

See also: Warranty

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