Kingwood Township Municipal Court – Frenchtown, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with limited area of authority over criminal offenses and civil disputes within its area. These courts can be located at the county or city level.

Kingwood Township Municipal Court INformation

Court: Kingwood Township Municipal Court
Address: “599 Oak Grove Road, Frenchtown, NJ 08825”
Phone: 908-996-0799

City: Frenchtown
County: Hunterdon
State: New Jersey

What is the role of the Kingwood Township Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Kingwood Township 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 infractions, or lawsuits.

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

TYPES OF Legal Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Frenchtown, New Jersey

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 places share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better serve their people or to save money on costs. The cases that may be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, criminal misdemeanors and code violations.

You will not find a standard 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’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Frenchtown?

Municipal courts are the first level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, 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 an attorney, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to serve for a specific duration.

Magistrates preside over 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
  • Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary examinations to determine if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court Case

The process of a municipal court case can be difficult to navigate. The following material is an overview of the common items involved in a regular municipal court case.

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is sent when a person has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to be present at their assigned time and courthouse, 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 in absentia and could be fined up to $1000 or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate

If someone fails to show up after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the person. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Frenchtown, NJ

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

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor charge can carry penalties up to $1000 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 courthouses 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.

Kingwood Township Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one place or system. The records that a person might need to depend on the type of charge 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 available.

FAQs ABOUT the Kingwood Township Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Frenchtown, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal matters 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 Frenchtown, New Jersey?

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 handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Kingwood Township 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 court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until they retire. Judges are sometimes chosen by the people with each precinct’s results weighted according to the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not attorneys but have some legal education and must complete several hours of ongoing education every period to maintain their credentials.