The Municipal Court is a local court created by state law, whose territory is confined to the borough or community in which it is located. Practice and procedures are governed by New Jersey Court Rules. The Municipal Court judge is responsible for overseeing the administration of his or her Municipal Court.
More serious offenses, known as indictable offenses, are sent to the County Prosecutor's Office. The County Prosecutor decides whether to present the case to a Grand Jury or to return the case to the Municipal Court as a less serious offense (a downgrade).
Cases heard in the Municipal Court are divided into four general categories:
- Violations of motor vehicle and traffic laws
- Violations of disorderly and petty disorderly persons offenses, (criminal matters which may result in fines or jail)
- Violations of Fish and Game Laws, Parks and Forests, Weights and Measures, SPCA, and Boating Regulations
- Violations of municipal ordinances (local laws)