- Municipal Court
- Citations & Tickets
- Minors & Juveniles
Minors & Juveniles
Municipal court has jurisdiction over a person between 10 and 17 years of age for certain traffic, alcohol, penal code, tobacco, educational code, city ordinance, and other fine only offenses. A juvenile traffic offender (minor) is a person younger than 17 years of age. Under the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code, a minor is a person under 21 years of age. For tobacco offenses, a minor is a person under the age of 21 years of age as defined by the Texas Health and Safety Code.
Parents & Legal Guardians
A parent or legal guardian’s presence in court is required for all proceedings if you are under 17 years of age. Your parent or legal guardian must personally appear with you in court and before the Municipal Judge.
Every juvenile who receives a citation (ticket) is required by law to appear with a parent or guardian in open court. At the court appearance, the judge will explain the juvenile defendants’ rights and all the options available. Juvenile defendants can then decide how they want to take care of their case. Unless the parents are an attorney, they cannot speak on-behalf of their child. The following is information for juvenile defendants and parents to review before court. Defendants and parents will meet with the Juvenile Case Manager (JCM) prior to court for “intake” in which the JCM with ask questions about family history, school and other information to help the JCM to provide guidance for completing court orders.
At the court appearance, the judge will review the juvenile’s understanding of his/her rights and the options available for disposing of the case and will take a plea from the juvenile or their attorney.
With a “not guilty” plea, your case will be scheduled for a Pre Trial hearing to talk with the prosecutor. Generally, there are three Pre Trial hearings before your case is set for trail (you have the right to a jury trial).
With a plea of “guilty” or “no contest,” you have the following options:
o Deferred Disposition: Deferred disposition is a type of probation will be for 180 days and is monitored by the JCM. Possible terms of probation include: community service, driver’s safety course, drug testing, drug awareness course and any other sanctions that the judge determines is appropriate to the type of offense with which you are charged.
o Driver’s Safety Course: The option is available only on certain traffic offenses such as speeding. You must have a valid driver’s license and insurance that shows you as a listed driver. To be eligible, you cannot have taken the course within the last 12 months from the date of the current citation. After being granted the right to take a driving safety course, you will have 90 days to complete the course and submit evidence of completion to the court. The costs is $144.00 or if the violation occurred in a school zone, the cost is $169.00. (No extensions will be granted if you do not complete the course within 90 days.)
o Pay the Fine and Costs: To pay the fines and costs in full will mean that a conviction will be entered on your case and may be reported to the Texas Department of Public Safety for inclusion on your driving record. Fines and costs assessed upon conviction can be paid at the time they are assessed in a lump sum or by time payments (time payment fee will be added) or by performing community service, if ordered by the Judge.
Failure to Appear
If a juvenile fails to appear at any hearing or trial as ordered by the judge OR fails to fulfill sentencing requirements, the court will notify the Texas Department of Public Safety. DPS then will take action to suspend or deny the driver’s license of the juvenile defendant.
Juvenile Case Manager/Teen Court Coordinator
550 Landa Street
New Braunfels, TX 78130