Hillsboro Municipal Court – Hillsboro, MO

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Hillsboro Municipal Court INformation

Court: Hillsboro Municipal Court
Address: “101 Main Street, PO Box 19, Hillsboro, MO 63050”
Phone: 636-797-3334 ext. 6

City: Hillsboro
County: Jefferson
State: Missouri

What is the role of the Hillsboro Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic matters. Courthouses like Hillsboro 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 divorce or other family matters, injury cases, more serious criminal charges, or contract disputes.

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

TYPES OF CASES HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Hillsboro, Missouri

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 service their people or to save money on 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.

You will not find a standard for what constitutes a misdemeanor versus a felony crime, 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’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Hillsboro?

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 assist for a specific time.

Judges manage hearings to determine:

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

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be difficult to navigate. The next portion is an overview of the common items involved in a regular municipal court case.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is given when a person has been charged with violating a town ordinance or state law. The citizen who has received the summons will need to appear at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t appear, they may be found guilty in absentia 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 Hillsboro, MO

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

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can have penalties up to $1,000.00 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 offenses 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.

Hillsboro Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may 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 type of charge they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is required by law to be present.

Questions ABOUT the Hillsboro Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Hillsboro, Missouri?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Hillsboro, Missouri?

Depending on the size 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 Hillsboro Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Missouri?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until retirement. Judges are sometimes chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results weighted based on population. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish many hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.