Canton Municipal Court – Canton, OH

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with limited jurisdiction over criminal offenses and civil disputes inside its location. These courts can be located at the city or county level.

Canton Municipal Court INformation

Court: Canton Municipal Court
Address: “Canton City Hall 218 Cleveland Ave SW, PO Box 24218, Canton, OH 44701”
Phone: 330-489-3203

City: Canton
County: Stark
State: Ohio

What is the purpose of the Canton Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor criminal charges, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courts like Canton 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 law matters, accident cases, more serious criminal infractions, or contract disputes.

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 felony matters and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Canton, Ohio

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 locales share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their population or to save money on expenditures. The cases that may be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

You will not see a set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony, 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 Canton?

Municipal courts are the first tier 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. Matters 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 serve for a specific duration.

Magistrates administer hearings to determine:

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

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

The process of a municipal courthouse case can be tricky. The following is an overview of the most common steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is sent when a person has been charged with violating a local rule or state law. The individual who has received the court summons will need to show up at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t come, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Show Up 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 Canton, OH

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 Canton Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor can carry penalties up to $1,000.00 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 license for it then you will be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Canton 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 type of matter they have before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

FAQs ABOUT the Canton Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Canton, Ohio?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Canton, Ohio?

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 Canton Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Ohio?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until retirement. Judges are commonly elected by the people with each precinct’s results judged based on the number of people. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete several hours of ongoing education every year to maintain their credentials.