Napoleon Municipal Court – Napoleon, ND

Oct 26, 2021

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

Napoleon Municipal Court INformation

Court: Napoleon Municipal Court
Address: “PO Box 31, Napoleon, ND 58561”
Phone: 701-754-2266

City: Napoleon
County: Logan
State: North Dakota

What is the purpose of the Napoleon Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Napoleon Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

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, personal injury, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

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

TYPES OF Legal Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Napoleon, North Dakota

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 places share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better serve their people or to save money on expenditures. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, low level crimes and code violations.

You will not find a standard for what establishes a misdemeanor versus a felony case, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanors and fines may also be higher for felonies. Traffic violations usually result in points against your driver’s license as well

How are cases handled in the municipal court in Napoleon?

Municipal courts are the first tier 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. Cases 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 manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and terms of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to police officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary inquiries to determine if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is sent when an individual has been charged with violating a town rule or state law. The individual who has received the summons from the court will need to appear 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 term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate

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

Municipal Court Penalties in Napoleon, ND

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

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor 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 charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Napoleon 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 a person might need to depend on the type of case 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.

Common Questions ABOUT the Napoleon Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Napoleon, North Dakota?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Napoleon, North Dakota?

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. Serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Napoleon Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in North Dakota?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until retirement. Judges are sometimes elected by precincts with each precinct’s results judged according to the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal training and must finish many hours of ongoing material every year to maintain their licenses.