Rockwall Municipal Court – Rockwall, TX

by | Oct 28, 2021

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

Rockwall Municipal Court INformation

Court: Rockwall Municipal Court
Address: “2860 State Hwy 66, Rockwall, TX 75087”
Phone: 972-771-7788

City: Rockwall
County: Rockwall
State: Texas

What is the role of the Rockwall Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Rockwall 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, personal injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, or lawsuits.

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

TYPES OF CASES seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Rockwall, Texas

Municipal courts are the bottom rung 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 service their citizens or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level crimes and code violations.

There is no set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor versus a felony crime, 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

what is the procedure for cases in the municipal court in Rockwall?

Municipal courts are the first tier 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 board to help for a specific period of time.

Magistrates preside over 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
  • Distribute search warrants to police officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court matter

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The citizen who has received the summons will need to show up at their assigned time and place, 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 $1,000.00 or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate

If someone fails to respond after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the individual. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Rockwall, TX

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

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can have penalties up to $1,000.00 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 medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Rockwall 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 an individual 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 required by law to be present.

Common Questions ABOUT the Rockwall Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Rockwall, Texas?

In Texas, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty crimes and misdemeanor charges.

What does the municipal court handle in Rockwall, Texas?

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 handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Rockwall Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Texas?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are sometimes elected by the people with each precinct’s results judged based on population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish many hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.