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A municipal court is a court with limited jurisdiction over criminal charges and civil disputes inside its location. These courts can be located at the county or city level.
Prichard Municipal Court INformation
Court: Prichard Municipal Court
Address: “A J Cooper Municipal Complex 216 E Prichard Ave, PO Box 10427, Prichard, AL 36610”
What is the role of the Prichard Municipal Court?
Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic incidents. Courts like Prichard Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.
In other situations, 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 lawsuits.
County courts have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can not exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and more expansive civil cases.
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TYPES OF CASES seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Prichard, Alabama
Municipal courts are the lowest level of courthouses in the United States. 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 assist their people or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, low level criminal charges and code violations.
You will not see a set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony, 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 is the procedure for cases in the municipal court in Prichard?
Magistrates manage hearings to determine:
- Probable cause for arrest
- Set bail amounts and terms of release
- Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against individuals by police officers
- Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime scenes
- Conduct preliminary examinations to understand if there is enough evidence to charge
The common process of a Municipal Court Case
Step One: Issuance of Summons
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Second Step: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate
Municipal Court Penalties in Prichard, AL
Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Prichard Municipal Court.
A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, 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 medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.
Prichard 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 before the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.
Questions ABOUT the Prichard Municipal Court
What is municipal court in Prichard, Alabama?
In Alabama, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small location and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty charges and misdemeanor crimes.
What does the municipal court handle in Prichard, Alabama?
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 Prichard Municipal Court have?
The number of judges depends on the municipality’s population.
How are cases heard in municipal courts in Alabama?
A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until retirement. Judges are commonly chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results weighted according to the number of people. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish many hours of ongoing material every period to maintain their licenses.
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