Options Regarding Your Ticket

Under Texas law, you can be brought to Trial only after a formal citation or Complaint has been filed. The citation or Complaint is a document that states the charge(s) against you and alleges that your actions were unlawful. If you are given a citation by a police officer, you must make your appearance either in person or by mail on or before the date at the bottom of your citation, which is called your appearance date. This date is not an actual Court date, you will be just be making your appearance to the Clerk's office to hear all your options regarding your citation. A phone call does not constitute making an appearance. Appearance dates cannot be rescheduled. If your appearance date falls upon a holiday or a weekend, please make your appearance on the next business day. Remember, your appearance date is an "on or before date" so you may make your appearance before the date that is listed on your citation. If you make your appearance by mail, it must be post marked by your appearance date.
 
If you receive a Summons from the Court, your court date will be the court date indicated on your Summons. If you were arrested at the stop or arrested on warrants issued from this Court, when your are released, you must appear at the Clerk's office within 10 days of your release. Being arrested on violations that have been filed within our Court does not dispose of those cases. You still must appear after your release within the 10 days given to hear all options regarding your citation and you must chose one at that time.
 
If you make your appearance late, you will loose the right to request a Safety Course or a Deferred Disposition from the Clerks, you will need to set a court date and request these options from the Prosecutor and Judge. If you do not make your appearance at all, you may be charged with an additional violation of Failure to Appear or Violate Promise to Appear and the Judge may issue warrants for your arrest, which will incur more fines and fees. 60 days after the issuance of warrants, and they still haven't been taken care of, the cases are sent to a collection agency and an additional 30% court cost fee will be added to each violation. The Court may also place a hold on your driver's license with the Texas Failure to Appear Program until your cases have been resolved in some way.  The hold placed on your license will keep you from being able to renew your license once it expires or if you lose it, the hold will keep you from obtaining a new one. This is not a suspension of your driver's license, just a hold placed until all cases are disposed of.  
 
Please note that unless there is already a judgment entered in the case, the only person who can take care of the ticket or make an appearance regarding the ticket is the person the ticket was issued to, unless this person is being represented by an attorney.
 
When you receive a citation, the options you have to resolve your case can vary depending on many different factors, including but not limited to the type of violation, the severity of the violation, the age of the defendant, etc. Please make sure to read all the helpful important information that is listed on the bottom of the citation under the signature line.
 
Options on How to Handle Your Ticket
 
IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITYAS A DEFENDANT TO KEEP THE COURT UPDATED OF YOUR ADDRESS, TELEPHONE NUMBER AND EMAIL ADDRESS UNTIL THE FINAL DISPOSITION OF YOUR CASE. IF YOU HAVE ANY CHANGES, PLEASE FILL OUT THE ADDRESS CHANGE FORM AND SEND OR EMAIL TO THE COURT.
 

Special Instruction for Juveniles and Minors

Texas State Law requires that all juveniles (ages 10-16) must appear in person with a parent or legal guardian in open Court regardless of the offense. For tobacco offenses, any defendant under the age of 18 must appear in open Court with a parent or guardian. For alcohol offenses, any defendant under the age of 21 must appear in open court with a parent or legal guardian.  The Court will send a Summons in the mail to the address on the citation with a court date and time to appear. You may disregard the appearance date listed at the bottom of the citation.  PLEASE NOTE THAT IT IS THE PARENT/GUARDIAN AND DEFENDANTS RESPONSIBLITY TO LET THE COURT KNOW OF ANY CHANGES TO THE DEFENDANT'S ADDRESS UNTIL ALL CASES ARE DISPOSED OF.

Option #1 - Plead No Contest or Guilty and Pay the Fine.
In Person
You may make your appearance  on or before your appearance date during normal business hours, Monday through Friday. Payment plans are available upon request. The Court accepts card cards, with a $5.00 administration fee added, cash, personal checks, money orders or cashier's checks. Temporary or business checks will not be accepted.
 
By Mail: Mail your payment  to the Municipal Court with a check or money order. Please see the "Fines and Fees Schedule and Payment Options" tab to determine the amount you should remit for payment or you can call the Court for the total amount due. Please also fill out, sign and return a PLEA FORM with your payment.
 
Online  or Phone Payment Options: Please see "Fines and Fees Schedule and Payment Options" tab.
 
Please note that if you choose not to make your appearance and pay the citation in full  to close the case, you will be waiving your right to Discovery, waiving your right to a Jury Trial and you will be convicted of the violation(s). Conviction(s) may be reported to the Texas Department of Public Safety.  
 
Option #2 – Plead Not Guilty and Request a Trial.
In Person – Appear in person on or before your appearance date to set a Court date for a Pre-trial Hearing to speak with the Prosecutor. At the Pre-Trial Hearing, If you and the Prosecutor cannot come to an agreement regarding your citation, you may enter a Not Guilty plea to the Judge in open Court and a Trial date will be set at that time. You have the right to a Jury Trial or a Bench Trial, which is a Trial by the Judge, no jury will be present.
 
By Mail – You may also enter a plea of not guilty by mail. To do so, you must write a letter to the Court and request a Pre-Trial Hearing, fill out, sign and return to the Court a PLEA FORM and it must be postmarked by the date by your appearance date. Include the following documents with your letter:
  • Copy of Driver’s License
  • Copy of the Citation
  • Plea Form
When all the proper documentation is received, the Court will mail you back a Pre-Trial date and time to appear in Court. If you plan on hiring an attorney to represent you, please have the attorney send a Letter of Representation to the Court as soon as possible. The Court is not required to provide an attorney to you. Should you need legal advice, please visit the main Municipal Court page for links regarding Legal Aid resources and self -help tips.
 
Option #3 – Request a Driving Safety Course or a Motorcycle Operating Course in Person or by Mail.
You may be eligible to have the citation dismissed by taking a Driving Safety Course , a Motorcycle Operator Training Course, if you were operating a motorcycle at the time you received the citation. To protect this right, you must appear in person or provide written notice to the Municipal Court on or before the  date listed at the bottom of  the citation.
If applying by mail, please fill out the DRIVING SAFETY COURSE REQUEST form and follow the instructions. This form must be notarized. Include all of the required documents needed and the required court cost of $129.00 or if the violation occurred in a school zone, $154.00 for violations issued before January 1, 2020. The court cost required for violations issued after January 1, 2020 are $144 or if the violation occurred in a school zone, $169. If you have met all the requirements, the Court will send you back information on how and where to take your course along with your due date.  
 
If applying in person, please bring your valid Texas driver's license, a hard copy of your valid personal automobile insurance policy or ID card with your name listed as a driver (insurance presented by phone will not be accepted)  and  if your violation was issued before January 1, 2020, $129.00 for court cost or if the violation occurred in a school zone $154.00 for court cost. The court cost required for violations issued after January 1, 2020 are $144 or if the violation occurred in a school zone, $169.
 
You may not take any safety course until the court has granted you permission to do so.
 
You are NOT eligible to take these courses if:
  • The alleged offense is not a moving violation;
  • Your alleged speed was 25 MPH or over the posted speed limit or if your alleged speed was 95 MPH;
  • You possess a CDL driver's license;
  • Your alleged offense was Fail to Stop for School Bus;
  • You have taken a driver's safety course within the last year;
  • If the alleged offense occurred in a construction zone with workers present.
If you are granted permission to take a safety course and If the terms are not met, the defendant will be ORDERED to a Show Cause Hearing and the Judge may order you to pay the fine and the violation will be reported as a conviction to The Department of Public Safety. If you do not show up at the Show Cause Hearing, you will be found guilty of the violation, a judgment will be rendered against you, a Capias Pro Fine Warrant may be issued for your arrest and the conviction will be reported to the Texas Department of Public Safety. A hold will be placed on your driver's license until the warrant is taken care of.
 
Option #4 – Request Deferred Disposition (Probation) in person.
If you do not qualify for or do not wish to take a Safety Course, you may appear in person at the Court during regular business hours on or before your appearance date at the bottom of your citation to request a Deferred Disposition or you may request a Deferred Disposition by mail by downloading the form, DEFERRED DISPOSITION APPLICATION Please fill it out and send it in to the court on our before your appearance date listed at the bottom of your citation . Please include a copy of your Identification.   

Deferred Disposition is a way of having your citation dismissed after completion of a probationary period, during which no additional convictions are received and after all requirements imposed in the deferred order are satisfied.

You will be required to pay the applicable court cost and a special expense fee by the end of your deferral date/probationary period. Upon successful completion of the probation period, which may be from one (1) day to one hundred eighty (180) days, the violation will be dismissed by the Court and not reported as a conviction.
 
You are NOT eligible for a Deferred Disposition if:
  • Your alleged speed was 25 MPH or more over the posted speed limit;
  • You possess a CDL driver's license;
  • The alleged offense occurred in a construction zone with workers present;
  • Your alleged violation must be either a moving violation or a first offense of No Insurance/Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility. If you have a violation other than a moving violation or insurance violation and still would like to request a Deferred Disposition, you will have to request a Court date and speak with the Prosecutor and Judge.
Deferred Disposition Requirements for Those Under 25 Years of Age:
Defendants under 25 years of age will be required to take a Driving Safety Course for all moving violations. Defendants with provisional driver's licenses will be required to take the "behind the wheel" test at the Department of Public Safety for all moving violations. If you're a juvenile (Ages 10-16) or a minor and your alleged offense was alcohol or tobacco related, you will be ordered to take the appropriate mandatory awareness class and will be ordered to do mandatory community service.
 
If you are granted a Deferred Disposition and fail to meet the terms, you will be ORDERED to a Show Cause Hearing and the Judge may order you to pay the fine and the violation will be reported as a conviction to The Department of Public Safety. If you do not show up at the Show Cause Hearing, you will be found guilty of the violation, a judgment will be rendered against you, and if there is money still owed to the Court, a Capias Pro Fine Warrant may be issued for your arrest and the conviction will be reported to the Texas Department of Public Safety. A hold will be placed on your driver's license until the warrant is taken care of.
 
Discovery Acknowledgement
You have the right to request from the State/Prosecutor all documents, items, and information regarding your case that is in the possession of the Sate and the State is required to provide you with the documents, items, and information requested. If you would like to make a Request for Discovery, you may do so by filling out the DISCOVERY REQUEST FORM and return it to the Court. Please follow all instructions on the form to make sure the Court can take care of your request in a timely manner.