Heath Springs Municipal Court – Kershaw, SC

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Heath Springs Municipal Court INformation

Court: Heath Springs Municipal Court
Address: “102 Duncan Street, PO Box 100, Kershaw, SC 29058”
Phone: 803-273-2066

City: Kershaw
County: Lancaster
State: South Carolina

What is the purpose of the Heath Springs Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic matters. Courts like Heath Springs Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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, personal injury, more serious criminal infractions, or lawsuits.

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 larger civil cases.

TYPES OF Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Kershaw, South Carolina

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 locales share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their people or to save money on expenditures. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, low level crimes and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony case, 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 Kershaw?

Municipal courts are the first tier 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 a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to help for a specific duration.

Magistrates manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for 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 law enforcement officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary inquiries to understand if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

The common process of a municipal court case can be complicated. The next portion is an overview of the most common steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

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

Step Two: 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 Kershaw, SC

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed attorney near you. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Heath Springs Municipal Court. 

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

Heath Springs 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, where it’s at in the process, and what type of information is needed by law to be present.

FAQs ABOUT the Heath Springs Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Kershaw, South Carolina?

In South Carolina, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts have a small jurisdiction and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanors.

What does the municipal court handle in Kershaw, 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. More serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Heath Springs Municipal Court have?

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

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 retirement. Judges are sometimes chosen by the people with each precinct’s results judged according to population. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete multiple hours of continuing courses every year to maintain their licenses.