In our normal, day to day lives, individuals and businesses are more likely to be involved with the local municipal government than with the state or federal government. This can be for a variety of reasons such as traffic tickets, issues of public nuisance, simple assaults and many more.
Understanding Municipal Matters
When understanding the type of matters that are governed by a municipal government, it is important to know the hierarchy of criminal offences in the country. Below is a list:
- Violations: Violations are minor crimes that include jaywalking, causing a public nuisance and receiving a speeding ticket. These are typically punishable by fines and the government does not have to provide an attorney for you. Violations are often settled in municipal courts.
- Misdemeanors: One level above violations, misdemeanors can result in up to a year of jail time on top of fines, community service and probation. Some examples of misdemeanors include DUIs and simple assault. The state is required to provide you with an attorney if you cannot pay for one. Some misdemeanors can be tried in municipal court.
- Felonies: Felonies are the most serious of offences and include crimes such as arson, rape, and murder. These are typically out of the hands of municipal courts.