Moorefield Municipal Court – Moorefield, WV

Oct 28, 2021

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

Moorefield Municipal Court INformation

Court: Moorefield Municipal Court
Address: “206 Winchester Avenue, Moorefield, WV 26836”
Phone: 304-530-6142

City: Moorefield
County: Hardy
State: West Virginia

What is the role of the Moorefield Municipal Court?

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

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

TYPES OF Legal Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Moorefield, West Virginia

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 jurisdictions share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their population 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 matters, low level crimes and code violations.

You will not see a set definition 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 Moorefield?

Municipal courts are the entry level 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 board to assist for a specific time.

Judges manage 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 secure evidence from crime scenes
  • start preliminary inquiries to understand if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The common process of a Municipal Court Case

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

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A court summons is sent when someone 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 courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they never appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: 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 Moorefield, WV

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 100% accurate for the Moorefield Municipal Court. 

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor can possess 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 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 $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Moorefield Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could 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 needed by law to be present.

FAQs ABOUT the Moorefield Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Moorefield, West Virginia?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Moorefield, West Virginia?

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 Moorefield Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in West Virginia?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until they retire. Judges are sometimes elected by the people with each precinct’s results judged based on the number of people. Municipal judges are often not attorneys but have some legal education and must finish multiple hours of ongoing courses every year to maintain their credentials.