City of Milwaukee Municipal Court – Milwaukee, WI

by | Oct 28, 2021

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

City of Milwaukee Municipal Court INformation

Court: City of Milwaukee Municipal Court
Address: “951 North James Lovell Street, Milwaukee, WI 53233”
Phone: 414-286-3800

City: Milwaukee
County: Milwaukee
State: Wisconsin

What is the purpose of the City of Milwaukee Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic matters. Courthouses like City of Milwaukee 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 matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can not exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felony matters and bigger civil cases.

TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Municipal courts are the lowest level of courts 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 people or to save money on overhead costs. The cases that could be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level criminal charges and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony crime, 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 is the procedure for cases in the municipal court in Milwaukee?

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 have often been called 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 help for a specific duration.

Judges manage 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 law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary inquiries to learn if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The common 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 case.

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is issued when an individual has been charged with violating a local rule or state law. The individual who has received the summons from the court will need to be present 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 anyways 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 respond after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the individual. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Milwaukee, WI

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney near you. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the City of Milwaukee Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can possess penalties up to $1000 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 crimes in municipal courts 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.

City of Milwaukee Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may 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 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.

FAQs ABOUT the City of Milwaukee Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Milwaukee, Wisconsin?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Milwaukee, Wisconsin?

Depending on the area 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 City of Milwaukee Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Wisconsin?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until they retire. Judges are sometimes elected by the people with each precinct’s results judged according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are generally not lawyers but have some legal training and must finish multiple hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.