Argo Municipal Court – Argo, AL

Oct 25, 2021

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A municipal court is a court with small jurisdiction over criminal charges and civil matters inside its area. These courts can be found at the city or county level.

Argo Municipal Court INformation

Court: Argo Municipal Court
Address: “100 Blackjack Rd, Argo, AL 35173”
Phone: 205-352-2120

City: Argo
County: St. Clair
State: Alabama

What is the role of the Argo Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Argo Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

On the other hand, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can not exceed the amount of $15,000, while the circuits courts handle felonies and bigger civil cases.

TYPES OF Legal Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Argo, Alabama

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courthouses in the United States. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some locales share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better serve their citizens or to save money on overhead costs. The cases that may be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, small criminal charges and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what makes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony crime, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor crimes and fines may also be higher for felonies. Traffic violations usually result in points against your driver’s license as well

 

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How are cases handled in the municipal court in Argo?

Municipal courts are the first level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic matters, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are often known as city courts or town courts. Cases are managed by a magistrate who is usually a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council board to help for a specific time.

Judges administer hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and terms of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to police officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary examinations to establish if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court Case

The process of a municipal court case can be difficult to navigate. The following is an overview of the steps involved in a regular municipal court case.

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is issued when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The citizen who has received the court summons will need to appear at their assigned time and place, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t show up, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1k or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate

If someone fails to respond after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the person. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Argo, AL

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Argo Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can have penalties up to $1k or one year in jail. A person’s driving privileges may be suspended for six months if they receive three speeding tickets within 12 months.

The penalties for different crimes in municipal courthouses vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

 

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Argo Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one location or system. The records that an individual might need to depend on the type of charge they have in front of the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

Common Questions ABOUT the Argo Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Argo, Alabama?

In Alabama, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small location and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Argo, Alabama?

Depending on the size of the municipality, a municipal court can handle a civil division (cases with less than  $15,000 at issue), a traffic/criminal division, or a housing and environmental division. Serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Argo Municipal Court have?

The count of judges depends on the municipality’s population.

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Alabama?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until they retire. Judges are commonly chosen by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated based on population. Municipal magistrates are generally not attorneys but have some legal education and must finish multiple hours of continuing education every period to maintain their licenses.

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