West Windsor Municipal Court – West Windsor, NJ

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with restrictive jurisdiction over criminal charges and civil disputes inside its location. These courts can be found at the city or county tier.

West Windsor Municipal Court INformation

Court: West Windsor Municipal Court
Address: “271 Clarksville Road , West Windsor , NJ 08550”
Phone: 609-799-0915

City: West Windsor
County: Mercer
State: New Jersey

What is the role of the West Windsor Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they handle minor criminal charges, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courthouses like West Windsor 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 matters, personal injury, more serious criminal infractions, or breaches of contract.

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

TYPES OF affairs adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in West Windsor, New Jersey

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courthouses in the United States. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some places share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their population or to save money on costs. The cases that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic violations, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

You will not find a standard for what constitutes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony crime, 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 handled in the municipal court in West Windsor?

Municipal courts are the entry level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are often known as city courts or town courts. Matters 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 period of time.

Judges preside over hearings to determine:

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

The 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 common items involved in a regular 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 court summons will need to appear at their assigned time and location, 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 in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail sentence 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 West Windsor, NJ

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the West Windsor Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor crime can carry 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 license for it then you will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

West Windsor Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government may be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one area or system. The records that a person might need to depend on the matter they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

Common Questions ABOUT the West Windsor Municipal Court

What is municipal court in West Windsor, New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor charges.

What does the municipal court handle in West Windsor, New Jersey?

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 handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the West Windsor Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in New Jersey?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are sometimes elected by precincts with each precinct’s results judged based on population. Municipal magistrates are generally not lawyers but have some legal training and must finish several hours of ongoing education every year to maintain their licenses.