Harrison Municipal Court – Harrison, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Harrison Municipal Court INformation

Court: Harrison Municipal Court
Address: “318 Harrison Avenue, Harrison, NJ 07029”
Phone: 973-268-2453

City: Harrison
County: Hudson
State: New Jersey

What is the purpose of the Harrison Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courts like Harrison Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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 law matters, personal injury, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

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 cases and more expansive civil cases.

TYPES OF Legal Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Harrison, New Jersey

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 jurisdictions share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better assist their people or to save money on administrative costs. The cases that could be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor crime 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 Harrison?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are often known as city courts or town courts. Cases are handled 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 period of time.

Judges administer hearings to determine:

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

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

The common 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 matter.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is sent when an individual has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The citizen who has received the court summons will need to appear at their assigned time and location, 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 $1k or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Show Up 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 Harrison, NJ

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 Harrison Municipal Court. 

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can have penalties up to $1k 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 charges in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Harrison Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one area or system. The records that an individual might need to depend on the matter they have in front of the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what type of information is needed by law to be present.

Questions ABOUT the Harrison Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Harrison, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower level 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 offenses and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Harrison, New Jersey?

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. Serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Harrison 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 courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until retirement. Judges are sometimes chosen by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated based on population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete many hours of continuing material every year to maintain their credentials.