Manchester Township Municipal Court – Manchester, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with restrictive area of authority over criminal charges and civil disputes within its geographic area. These courts can be found at the city or county level.

Manchester Township Municipal Court INformation

Court: Manchester Township Municipal Court
Address: “1 Colonial Drive, Manchester, NJ 08759”
Phone: 732-657-8121 ext. 3400

City: Manchester
County: Ocean
State: New Jersey

What is the role of the Manchester Township Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic incidents. Courthouses like Manchester Township 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, accident cases, more serious criminal infractions, or breaches of contract.

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 felonies and larger civil matters.

TYPES OF Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Manchester, New Jersey

Municipal courts are the lowest 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 costs. The matters that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, criminal misdemeanors and code violations.

You will not see a set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony crime, 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 managed in the municipal court in Manchester?

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 popularly known 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 serve for a specific duration.

Magistrates preside over hearings to determine:

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

The common process of a Municipal Court Case

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be complicated. The following is an overview of the common items involved in a typical municipal court matter.

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The citizen who has received the summons from the court 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 never appear, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1k 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 person. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Manchester, NJ

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

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime 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 offenses. 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.

Manchester Township Municipal Court Records

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

FAQs ABOUT the Manchester Township Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Manchester, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal matters within a city or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor charges.

What does the municipal court handle in Manchester, 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. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Manchester Township Municipal Court have?

The count 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 commonly chosen by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated based on the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish multiple hours of ongoing courses every year to maintain their licenses.