A municipal court is a court with small jurisdiction over criminal charges and civil matters within its location. These courts can be found at the city or county tier.
Bridgewater Township Municipal Court INformation
Court: Bridgewater Township Municipal Court
Address: “100 Commons Way, Bridgewater, NJ 08807”
State: New Jersey
What is the role of the Bridgewater Township Municipal Court?
Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor criminal charges, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Bridgewater Township Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.
On the other hand, the purpose 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, injury cases, more serious criminal charges, or lawsuits.
County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can’t exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felonies and bigger civil cases.
TYPES OF CASES adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Bridgewater, New Jersey
Municipal courts are the lowest level of courthouses in the U.S.. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some places share municipal courts with other municipalities.
This can be done to better serve their population or to save money on administrative costs. The cases that will be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, small criminal charges and code violations.
You will not find a standard for what makes a misdemeanor 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
How are cases handled in the municipal court in Bridgewater?
Judges preside over hearings to determine:
- Probable cause for arrest
- Set bail amounts and conditions 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 scenes
- Conduct preliminary inquiries to establish if there is enough evidence to mount a charge
The Process of a Municipal Court Case
Step One: An Issuance of Summons
Second Step: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate
Municipal Court Penalties in Bridgewater, NJ
Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer near you. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Bridgewater Township Municipal Court.
A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can have penalties up to $1,000.00 or one year in local 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 courts 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 $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.
Bridgewater Township Municipal Court Records
Municipal Court records from a municipal court 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 matter they have before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what type of information is required by law to be available.
Questions ABOUT the Bridgewater Township Municipal Court
What is municipal court in Bridgewater, New Jersey?
In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a city or municipality. Municipal courts 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 Bridgewater, New Jersey?
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 Bridgewater Township Municipal Court have?
The number of judges depends on the municipality’s population.
How are cases heard in municipal courts in New Jersey?
A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are commonly chosen by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated according to population. Municipal judges are often not attorneys but have some legal training and must finish several hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.