Pohatcong Township Municipal Court – Phillipsburg, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Pohatcong Township Municipal Court INformation

Court: Pohatcong Township Municipal Court
Address: “50 Municipal Drive, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865”
Phone: 908-454-6121

City: Phillipsburg
County: Warren
State: New Jersey

What is the purpose of the Pohatcong Township Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor criminal charges, civil disputes, and traffic matters. Courts like Pohatcong Township 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, personal injury cases, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can not exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felony matters and bigger civil matters.

TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Phillipsburg, New Jersey

Municipal courts are the entry level of courts 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 serve their citizens or to save money on overhead costs. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level crimes 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 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 managed in the municipal court in Phillipsburg?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic crimes, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are popularly known city courts or town courts. Matters are handled by a magistrate who is usually an attorney, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council board to assist for a specific period of time.

Magistrates manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to police officers in order to seize evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The person who has received the court summons will need to appear at their assigned time and place, 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 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 Phillipsburg, NJ

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 accurate for the Pohatcong Township Municipal Court. 

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor crime can carry 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 courthouses vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you could be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Pohatcong Township 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, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is required by law to be available.

FAQs ABOUT the Pohatcong Township 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 city or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small location and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor charges.

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

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 Pohatcong Township Municipal Court have?

The number 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 duration or until retirement. Judges are sometimes chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results judged based on the number of people. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete several hours of ongoing education every period to maintain their licenses.