Seaside Heights Municipal Court – Seaside Heights, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Seaside Heights Municipal Court INformation

Court: Seaside Heights Municipal Court
Address: “116 Sherman Avenue, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751”
Phone: 732-830-2202

City: Seaside Heights
County: Ocean
State: New Jersey

What is the purpose of the Seaside Heights Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Seaside Heights 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, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, or lawsuits.

County courts have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that won’t exceed the amount of $15,000, while the circuits courts handle felonies and bigger civil cases.

TYPES OF Legal Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Seaside Heights, 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 administrative costs. The matters that may be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, small criminal charges and code violations.

You will not find a standard for what constitutes a misdemeanor versus a felony case, 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’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Seaside Heights?

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 have often been called city courts or town courts. Cases are handled by a magistrate who is usually a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to serve for a specific duration.

Judges manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
  • Distribute search warrants to police officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary inquiries to determine if there is enough evidence to issue a charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

The process of a municipal courthouse case can be difficult to navigate. The following material is an overview of the most common steps involved in a regular municipal court matter.

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city ordinance or state law. The person who has received the court summons will need to be present at their assigned time and place, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they fail to appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1000 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 Seaside Heights, NJ

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

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime 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 charges in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a prescription for it then you will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Seaside Heights Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one location or system. The records that a person might need to depend on the type of charge they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is required by law to be present.

FAQs ABOUT the Seaside Heights Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Seaside Heights, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty charges and misdemeanors.

What does the municipal court handle in Seaside Heights, New Jersey?

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. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Seaside Heights Municipal Court have?

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

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 term of years or until they retire. Judges are sometimes elected by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated according to the number of people. Municipal judges are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete multiple hours of ongoing education every year to maintain their licenses.