Hidalgo Municipal Court – Hidalgo, TX

by | Oct 28, 2021

A municipal court is a court with small area of authority over criminal offenses and civil matters inside its location. These courts can be found at the county or city tier.

Hidalgo Municipal Court INformation

Court: Hidalgo Municipal Court
Address: “110 Flora Ave, Hidalgo, TX 78557”
Phone: 956-843-8104

City: Hidalgo
County: Hidalgo
State: Texas

What is the purpose of the Hidalgo Municipal Court?

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

On the other hand, 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 cases, more serious criminal charges, or contract disputes.

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

TYPES OF CASES seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Hidalgo, Texas

Municipal courts are the entry level of courts in the United States. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some places share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better serve their citizens or to save money on administrative costs. The cases that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, low level criminal charges and code violations.

There is no set definition for what makes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony charge, 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

what is the procedure for cases in the municipal court in Hidalgo?

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 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 serve for a specific period of time.

Judges administer hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime scenes
  • start preliminary inquiries to learn if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The Process of a Municipal Court Case

The process of a municipal court case can be tricky. The next portion is an overview of the steps involved in a regular municipal court matter.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when a person has been charged with violating a town rule or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to be present at their assigned time and location, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond 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 given a jail sentence 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 Hidalgo, TX

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

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor charge 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 crimes 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 will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Hidalgo 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 a person might need to depend on the type of charge they have before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what type of information is needed by law to be available.

Common Questions ABOUT the Hidalgo Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Hidalgo, Texas?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Hidalgo, Texas?

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 Hidalgo Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Texas?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until retirement. Judges are commonly elected by precincts with each precinct’s results evaluated according to population. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete several hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.