A municipal court is a court with small jurisdiction over criminal charges and civil matters within its location. These courts can be found at the county or city level.
Sumas Municipal Court INformation
Court: Sumas Municipal Court
Address: “433 Cherry Street, PO Box 9, Sumas, WA 98295”
What is the role of the Sumas Municipal Court?
Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil cases, and traffic matters. Courthouses like Sumas Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.
On the other hand, 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, personal injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, or breaches of contract.
County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can’t exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and bigger civil matters.
TYPES OF CASES adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Sumas, Washington
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 help their citizens or to save money on expenditures. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, low level criminal charges and code infractions.
You will not see a set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor versus a felony charge, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor crimes 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 Sumas?
Magistrates manage hearings to determine:
- Probable cause for arrest
- Set bail amounts and conditions of release
- Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against individuals by police officers
- Distribute search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
- start preliminary inquiries to learn if there is enough evidence to issue a charge
The usual process of a Municipal Court matter
Step One: Issuance of Summons
Second Step: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate
Municipal Court Penalties in Sumas, WA
Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer near you. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Sumas Municipal Court.
A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can carry penalties up to $1000 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 crimes in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an offenses. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you will be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.
Sumas 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 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.
FAQs ABOUT the Sumas Municipal Court
What is municipal court in Sumas, Washington?
In Washington, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts will 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 Sumas, Washington?
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. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.
How many judges does the Sumas Municipal Court have?
The number of judges depends on the municipality’s population.
How are cases heard in municipal courts in Washington?
A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are commonly chosen by the people with each precinct’s results weighted based on population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal training and must finish several hours of continuing courses every period to maintain their licenses.