A municipal court is a court with restrictive area of authority over criminal charges and civil disputes inside its area. These courts can be located at the county or city level.
Stratford Municipal Court INformation
Court: Stratford Municipal Court
Address: “518 N 3rd St, Stratford, TX 79084”
What is the role of the Stratford Municipal Court?
Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courts like Stratford 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 matters, accident cases, more serious criminal infractions, or contract disputes.
County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can’t exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felonies and larger civil matters.
TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Stratford, Texas
Municipal courts are the lowest level of courthouses 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 cases that may be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level criminal charges and code violations.
There is no set definition for what makes a misdemeanor 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 Stratford?
Judges administer hearings to determine:
- Probable cause for an arrest
- Set bail amounts and terms of release
- Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
- Issue search warrants to police officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
- Conduct preliminary examinations to understand if there is enough evidence to mount a charge
The usual process of a Municipal Court matter
Step One: An Issuance of Summons
Second Step: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate
Municipal Court Penalties in Stratford, TX
Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed lawyer. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Stratford Municipal Court.
A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor charge can carry penalties up to $1k 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 charges in municipal courts 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.
Stratford 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 a person 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 Stratford Municipal Court
What is municipal court in Stratford, Texas?
In Texas, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small location and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty charges and misdemeanors.
What does the municipal court handle in Stratford, 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. Serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.
How many judges does the Stratford Municipal Court have?
The count 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 retirement. Judges are commonly chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results evaluated according to population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish many hours of continuing courses every year to maintain their credentials.