Phillipsburg Municipal Court – Phillipsburg, NJ

Oct 26, 2021

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

Phillipsburg Municipal Court INformation

Court: Phillipsburg Municipal Court
Address: “675 Corliss Avenue, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865”
Phone: 908-454-3211

City: Phillipsburg
County: Warren
State: New Jersey

What is the purpose of the Phillipsburg Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic incidents. Courts like Phillipsburg 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 law matters, injury cases, 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 felony cases and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF CASES adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Phillipsburg, New Jersey

Municipal courts are the entry level of courthouses 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 service their population or to save money on costs. The matters that will be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, low level criminal charges and code violations.

You will not see a set definition for what makes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony, 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 handled in the municipal court in Phillipsburg?

Municipal courts are the first level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic matters, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are often known as 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 administer 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 police officers in order to seize evidence from crime scenes
  • start preliminary inquiries to establish if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The usual 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: An Issuance of Summons

A court summons is issued when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The citizen who has received the summons will need to be present 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: 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 Phillipsburg, NJ

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

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor crime can have penalties up to $1k 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 crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Phillipsburg 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 before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what type of information is needed by law to be present.

Common Questions ABOUT the Phillipsburg Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Phillipsburg, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small jurisdiction and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty charges and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Phillipsburg, New Jersey?

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 deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Phillipsburg 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 sometimes chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results weighted according to the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete many hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their credentials.