Benbrook Municipal Court – Benbrook, TX

by | Oct 28, 2021

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

Benbrook Municipal Court INformation

Court: Benbrook Municipal Court
Address: “911 Winscott Rd, Benbrook, TX 76126”
Phone: 817-249-3000 ext. 6131

City: Benbrook
County: Tarrant
State: Texas

What is the role of the Benbrook Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Benbrook Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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 divorce or other family matters, personal injury cases, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

County courts have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that won’t exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felonies and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF CASES HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Benbrook, Texas

Municipal courts are the entry level of courthouses in the U.S.. 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 assist their citizens or to save money on expenditures. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

You will not find a standard for what establishes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony charge, 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

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

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

Judges manage hearings to determine:

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

The Process of a Municipal Court matter

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be difficult to navigate. The next portion is an overview of the most common steps involved in a regular municipal court matter.

First Step: Issuance of Summons

A summons is issued when someone has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The person who has received the summons will need to be present at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they never appear, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail sentence if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate

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

Municipal Court Penalties in Benbrook, 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 Benbrook Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor charge 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 offenses in municipal courthouses vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Benbrook 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 a person might need to depend on the matter they have before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is required by law to be available.

FAQs ABOUT the Benbrook Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Benbrook, Texas?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Benbrook, Texas?

Depending on the scope 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 deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Benbrook 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 commonly elected by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated according to the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not attorneys but have some legal training and must finish several hours of continuing education every year to maintain their credentials.