Pine Grove Municipal Court – Pine Grove, WV

by | Oct 28, 2021

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

Pine Grove Municipal Court INformation

Court: Pine Grove Municipal Court
Address: “PO Box 286, Pine Grove, WV 26419”
Phone: 304-889-3351

City: Pine Grove
County: Wetzel
State: West Virginia

What is the role of the Pine Grove Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courts like Pine Grove 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 law matters, injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, or contract disputes.

County courts have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can’t exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felonies and larger civil matters.

TYPES OF affairs HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Pine Grove, West Virginia

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courthouses in the U.S.. 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 service their citizens or to save money on overhead costs. The matters that may be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, small criminal charges and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor 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 Pine Grove?

Municipal courts are the lowest level 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. 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.

Judges preside over hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and the conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
  • Distribute search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary inquiries to understand if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

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

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is sent when a person has been charged with violating a local rule or state law. The individual who has received the court summons will need to show up at their assigned time and location, 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 $1k or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance 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 Pine Grove, WV

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

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can possess 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 crimes 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.

Pine Grove 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 kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

FAQs ABOUT the Pine Grove Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Pine Grove, West Virginia?

In West Virginia, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Pine Grove, West Virginia?

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. Serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Pine Grove Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in West Virginia?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are commonly elected by precincts with each precinct’s results weighted according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are generally not attorneys but have some legal training and must complete several hours of ongoing education every period to maintain their licenses.