Richland Municipal Court – Richland, MS

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with small jurisdiction over criminal offenses and civil disputes inside its area. These courts can be located at the city or county tier.

Richland Municipal Court INformation

Court: Richland Municipal Court
Address: “371 Scarbrough St, Richland, MS 39218”
Phone: 601-420-1563

City: Richland
County: Rankin
State: Mississippi

What is the purpose of the Richland Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courts like Richland Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

On the other hand, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family matters, injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, 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 matters and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Richland, Mississippi

Municipal courts are the lowest level of courts 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 serve their citizens or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level criminal charges and code infractions.

You will not see a set definition for what makes 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

How are cases handled in the municipal court in Richland?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, 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 help for a specific time.

Magistrates 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 defendants by police officers
  • Distribute search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to seize evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary examinations to establish if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The Process of a Municipal Court matter

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be tricky. The following material is an overview of the most common steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when a person has been charged with violating a town rule or state law. The person who has received the court summons will need to show up at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1000 or given a jail sentence 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 Richland, MS

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

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

Richland Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one location or system. The records that an individual 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.

Common Questions ABOUT the Richland Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Richland, Mississippi?

In Mississippi, 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 crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Richland, Mississippi?

Depending on the scope 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 Richland Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Mississippi?

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 weighted based on population. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete several hours of continuing education every year to maintain their credentials.