A federal warrant is issued by a federal judge upon the demonstration of probable cause by a representative of a government agency, usually a federal law enforcement officer. The federal warrant is then issued in order to arrest, seize, or search an individual. In countries like the United States and Australia, there are several levels that operate within the government. There is a local, state, and federal system that addresses legal issues. a federal warrant carries more weight than a state or local warrant because of the gravity of the cause given to the judge. Usually a judge only issues a federal warrant when an undisputed cause is presented or when it cannot be challenged in court.
Those who have been subject to a federal warrant can be subject to different federal charges. An individual who is a subject of a federal arrest warrant may be due to a federal indictment, which essentially points to the federal government is making an official charge or accusation against the aforementioned individual. A federal search warrant may also be the case wherein an individual is in possession of property involved in a federal criminal investigation. Lastly, a federal warrant may also serve as a federal seizure warrant wherein assets can be seized by a federal agency such as the Internal Revenue Services.
When a federal warrant is issued, it is entered into a database that can be accessed by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. This is to ensure that a federal warrant can be enforced when the opportunity arises.