Atlanta Municipal Court – Atlanta, TX

Oct 28, 2021

A municipal court is a court with limited area of authority over criminal offenses and civil matters inside its area. These courts can be located at the county or city level.

Atlanta Municipal Court INformation

Court: Atlanta Municipal Court
Address: “Atlanta City Hall 315 N Buckner St, PO Box 669, Atlanta, TX 75551”
Phone: 903-796-7153 ext. 116

City: Atlanta
County: Cass
State: Texas

What is the role of the Atlanta Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Atlanta Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

In other situations, the purpose of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family law matters, personal injury, more serious criminal charges, or contract disputes.

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

TYPES OF affairs adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Atlanta, Texas

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courts in the U.S.. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some jurisdictions share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their population or to save money on costs. The cases that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, small criminal charges and code infractions.

You will not see a set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony case, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanors and fines may also be higher for felonies. Traffic violations usually result in points against your driver’s license as well

What’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Atlanta?

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

Judges administer hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and the conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
  • Distribute search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime scenes
  • Conduct preliminary examinations to establish if there is enough evidence to charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

The process of a municipal court case can be tricky. The next portion is an overview of the steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is issued when a person has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons from the court will need to be present 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 in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate

If someone fails to show up after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the individual. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Atlanta, TX

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Atlanta Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor charge can possess penalties up to $1000 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 courts vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you will be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Atlanta Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one place or system. The records that an individual might need to depend on the type of case they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what type of information is required by law to be available.

Questions ABOUT the Atlanta Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Atlanta, Texas?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Atlanta, Texas?

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. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Atlanta Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Texas?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are sometimes chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results evaluated according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are generally not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete many hours of ongoing material every period to maintain their licenses.