Winfield Municipal Court – Winfield, MO

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with small area of authority over criminal offenses and civil disputes inside its area. These courts can be found at the city or county tier.

Winfield Municipal Court INformation

Court: Winfield Municipal Court
Address: “City Hall 51 Harry’s Way, PO Box 59, Winfield, MO 63389”
Phone: 636-668-6031

City: Winfield
County: Lincoln
State: Missouri

What is the role of the Winfield Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic incidents. Courthouses like Winfield Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

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 family matters, personal injury cases, more serious criminal charges, or lawsuits.

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

TYPES OF Legal Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Winfield, Missouri

Municipal courts are the entry level 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 matters that could be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, low level crimes and code infractions.

You will not find a standard for what makes 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 managed in the municipal court in Winfield?

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

Magistrates manage hearings to determine:

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

The usual process of a Municipal Court matter

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

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when an individual has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The citizen who has received the summons will need to show up at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they fail to appear, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1k or sentenced to jail time if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: 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 Winfield, MO

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

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor charge can possess penalties up to $1,000.00 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 offenses in municipal courthouses vary depending on the severity of an charges. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Winfield 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 before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

FAQs ABOUT the Winfield Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Winfield, Missouri?

In Missouri, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a city or municipality. Municipal courts thus 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 Winfield, Missouri?

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. Serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Winfield Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Missouri?

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 judged based on population. Municipal judges are often not attorneys but have some legal education and must finish multiple hours of ongoing education every year to maintain their credentials.