Village of Dane Municipal Court – Dane, WI

Oct 28, 2021

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

Village of Dane Municipal Court INformation

Court: Village of Dane Municipal Court
Address: “102 West Main Street, PO Box 168, Dane, WI 53529”
Phone: 608-849-5422

City: Dane
County: Dane
State: Wisconsin

What is the purpose of the Village of Dane Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil disputes, and traffic incidents. Courts like Village of Dane Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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 charges, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that won’t exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felony matters and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Dane, Wisconsin

Municipal courts are the entry level of courts 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 assist their people or to save money on overhead costs. The matters that will 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 see a set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor crime 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

how are cases managed in the municipal court in Dane?

Municipal courts are the entry level 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. 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 board to serve for a specific period of time.

Magistrates preside over hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and the conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against defendants by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to police officers in order to seize evidence from crime scenes
  • start preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

The common 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 typical municipal court case.

First Step: Issuance of Summons

A summons is given when someone has been charged with violating a local rule or state law. The person who has received the summons from the court 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 don’t appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1k or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: 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 Dane, WI

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed lawyer. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Village of Dane Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can have 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 courthouses 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 $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Village of Dane Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government 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 in front of the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

Questions ABOUT the Village of Dane Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Dane, Wisconsin?

In Wisconsin, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a city or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor crimes.

What does the municipal court handle in Dane, Wisconsin?

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 Village of Dane Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Wisconsin?

A municipal court 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 the number of people. Municipal magistrates are often not attorneys but have some legal training and must complete many hours of ongoing education every year to maintain their credentials.