Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court – Madison, WI

by | Oct 28, 2021

A municipal court is a court with restrictive area of authority over criminal charges and civil matters within its area. These courts can be found at the county or city tier.

Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court INformation

Court: Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court
Address: “810 Shorewood Boulevard, Madison, WI 53705”
Phone: 608-267-2690

City: Madison
County: Dane
State: Wisconsin

What is the purpose of the Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

In other situations, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve divorce or other family matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, 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 felony matters and bigger civil cases.

TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Madison, Wisconsin

Municipal courts are the bottom rung 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 administrative costs. The matters that may be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, low level crimes and code violations.

You will not find a standard for what makes a misdemeanor crime versus a felony case, 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

What’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Madison?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic crimes, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are have often been called city courts or town courts. Cases are managed by a magistrate who is usually a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to assist for a specific time period.

Magistrates manage hearings to determine:

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

The Process of a Municipal Court matter

The common process of a municipal court 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 given when an individual has been charged with violating a city ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to appear at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they never appear, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1000 or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: 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 Madison, WI

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed attorney. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor charge can carry penalties up to $1000 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 crimes in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court could 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 matter they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what type of information is required by law to be present.

Questions ABOUT the Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Madison, Wisconsin?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Madison, Wisconsin?

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 deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Village of Shorewood Hills Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Wisconsin?

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 chosen by the people with each precinct’s results judged according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are often not attorneys but have some legal education and must finish multiple hours of ongoing courses every year to maintain their credentials.