Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court – Elkhart Lake, WI

Oct 28, 2021

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

Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court INformation

Court: Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court
Address: “84 North Lake Street, PO Box 412, Elkhart Lake, WI 53020”
Phone: 920-876-2244

City: Elkhart Lake
County: Sheboygan
State: Wisconsin

What is the purpose of the Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they work with minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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 infractions, or breaches of contract.

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

TYPES OF Legal Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin

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 jurisdictions share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better service their population or to save money on costs. The cases that may be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

You will not find a standard for what makes a misdemeanor crime 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

how are cases managed in the municipal court in Elkhart Lake?

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 an attorney, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to assist for a specific time period.

Magistrates preside over hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and terms of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to police officers in order to secure evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court Case

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be complicated. The following material is an overview of the steps involved in a typical municipal court matter.

First Step: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is given when a person has been charged with violating a town ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to be present at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t show up, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1k or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance 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 Elkhart Lake, WI

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed attorney. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court. 

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

Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one location or system. The records that an individual might need to depend on the type of case they have in front of the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be present.

Questions ABOUT the Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin?

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 deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Village of Elkhart Lake – Town of Rhine Municipal Court have?

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

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 they retire. Judges are commonly chosen by the people 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 continuing courses every year to maintain their credentials.