Hanahan Municipal Court – Hanahan, SC

Oct 26, 2021

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

Hanahan Municipal Court INformation

Court: Hanahan Municipal Court
Address: “1255 Yeamans Hall Road, Hanahan, SC 29410”
Phone: 843-576-5262

City: Hanahan
County: Berkeley
State: South Carolina

What is the role of the Hanahan Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they deal with minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic matters. Courts like Hanahan Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

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

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

TYPES OF affairs HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Hanahan, South Carolina

Municipal courts are the lowest level of courts in the United States. 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 serve their citizens or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, small criminal charges and code violations.

You will not find a standard for what establishes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor charges 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 Hanahan?

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. Matters are managed 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 manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and terms of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against individuals by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary inquiries to determine if there is enough evidence to charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is given when an individual has been charged with violating a town ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to appear 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 anyways and could be fined up to $1000 or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: 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 Hanahan, SC

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Hanahan Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor crime can have 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 charges in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Hanahan Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government 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 type of matter they have in front of the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

Questions ABOUT the Hanahan Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Hanahan, South Carolina?

In South Carolina, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Hanahan, South Carolina?

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. Serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Hanahan Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in South Carolina?

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 precincts with each precinct’s results weighted based on population. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete several hours of continuing material every year to maintain their credentials.