Municipal court record and transcript entries. 800.11(1)(1)
Every municipal court shall keep a court record in which the court shall enter, in actions to which they relate:
The title of every action commenced before the municipal court, including the name and address of the defendant;
The process issued, date and place where it issued, when returnable and the return of the officer;
A brief statement of the charges, including the nature and time of the offense and the section of law violated;
Every adjournment, stating at whose request and to what time;
The names of witnesses sworn, stating at whose request;
The judgment rendered by the municipal court, including the penalties imposed, the date of rendering judgment and the costs assessed in the action;
The amount of bail and names and addresses of sureties, if any;
The time of ordering any stay of execution;
The time of issuing execution and the name of the officer to whom delivered;
The return of every execution and when made and every renewal of an execution, with the date thereof;
The date and reason of removal of the action to another court;
The date of an appeal made from judgment; and
All motions made in the action, the decision thereon and all other proceedings in the action which the municipal court may think useful.
Failure of the municipal court to keep a court record properly shall not affect the jurisdiction of the municipal court or render the judgment void.
The transcript of judgment shall contain the following:
The certification that it is a true copy of the judgment.
If the municipal judge is elected under s. 755.01 (4)
, the court shall keep separate court records for each municipality.
History: 1977 c. 305
; 1979 c. 32
, 92 (17)
; Stats. 1979 s. 800.11; 1985 a. 89
; 1995 a. 224
; 2009 a. 402
Relief from judgment. 800.115(1)
A defendant may within 6 months after the judgment is entered move for relief from the judgment because of mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect.
Nothing in this section shall prevent the parties from stipulating and the court approving the reopening of a judgment for any other reason justifying relief from operation of the judgment.
The court may impose costs on the motion as allowed under s. 814.07
Upon receiving or making a motion under this section, the court shall provide notice to all parties and schedule a hearing on the motion.
History: 1987 a. 389
; 2009 a. 402
Only a defendant may seek relief under this section. However a municipal court has the inherent authority to vacate a void judgment irrespective of the statute's requirements for reopening a judgment. City of Kenosha v. Jensen, 184 Wis. 2d 91
, 516 N.W.2d 4
(Ct. App. 1994).
Municipal court contempt procedure. 800.12(1)
In this section, "contempt of court" means any of the following intentional acts:
Misconduct in the presence of the court that interferes with the court proceeding or with the administration of justice, or that impairs the respect due the court.
Refusal of a witness to appear without reasonable excuse.
A judge may impose a forfeiture in an amount not to exceed $200 for a contempt of court.
For a contempt of court described in sub. (1) (a)
, the judge may impose imprisonment in the county jail for not more than 7 days and impose a forfeiture. These penalties shall be imposed immediately after the contempt of court has occurred and only under the following conditions:
For the purpose of preserving order in the court and protecting the authority and dignity of the court.
After allowing the person who committed the contempt of court an opportunity to address the court.
For a contempt of court described in sub. (1) (b)
, the judge may do any of the following:
Issue a warrant to bring the witness before the court for the contempt and to testify.
In addition to ordering the witness to pay a forfeiture under sub. (2)
, the judge may order the witness to pay all costs of the witness's apprehension.
Recording in municipal court. 800.13(1)
Every proceeding in which testimony is taken under oath or affirmation in a municipal court shall be recorded by electronic means for purposes of appeal.
Notwithstanding sub. (1)
, a municipal court is not a court of record.
History: 1977 c. 305
; 1979 c. 32
; 1979 c. 237
; Stats. 1979 s. 800.13; 2009 a. 402
Appeal from municipal court decision. 800.14(1)(1)
Appeals from judgments, decisions on motions brought under s. 800.115
, or determinations regarding whether the defendant is unable to pay the judgment because of poverty, as that term is used in s. 814.29 (1) (d)
, may be taken by either party to the circuit court of the county where the offense occurred. The appellant shall appeal by giving the municipal judge and other party written notice of appeal within 20 days after the judgment or decision. No appeals may be taken from default judgments.
On appeal by the defendant, the defendant shall execute a bond, at the discretion of the municipal judge, to the municipal court with or without surety, approved by the municipal judge, that if the judgment is affirmed in whole or in part the defendant shall pay the judgment and all costs awarded on appeal.
On meeting the requirements for appeal, execution on the judgment of the municipal court or enforcement of the order of the municipal court shall be stayed until the final disposition of the appeal.
An appeal from a judgment where a trial has been held shall be on the record unless, within 20 days after notice of appeal has been filed with the municipal court under sub. (1)
, either party requests that a new trial be held in circuit court. The new trial shall be conducted by the court without a jury unless either party requests a 6-person jury trial and posts the jury fee under s. 814.61 (4)
within 10 days after the order for a new trial.
If there is no request or motion under sub. (4)
, or if the appeal is from a judgment or decision in which a trial has not been held, the appeal shall be based upon a review of the proceedings in the municipal court. The municipal court shall transmit to the circuit court a copy of the entire record, including any electronic recording created under s. 800.13 (1)
. When testimony has been recorded in the municipal court, the municipal court shall order the preparation of a transcript of the proceedings, at the cost of the appellant, from the electronic recording and shall certify the transcript and transmit it with the record. An appellant shall, within 20 days after notice of appeal, submit payment of the estimated cost of the transcript, as determined by the municipal court, but shall be responsible for the actual cost of preparing the transcript. A defendant claiming an inability to pay with regard to the bond or the transcript fee may petition the municipal court for a waiver. A defendant claiming an inability to pay with regard to the appeal fee or jury fee may petition the circuit court for a waiver.
The disposition of the appeal shall be certified to the municipal court by the circuit court within 30 days of the judgment of the circuit court. If the disposition requires payment of a forfeiture by the defendant, the forfeiture and all costs, fees, and surcharges shall be payable to the municipality.
Review under sub. (5) is analogous to appellate review of a trial to the court under s. 805.17 (2). Village of Williams Bay v. Metzl, 124 Wis. 2d 356
, 369 N.W.2d 186
(Ct. App. 1985).
When a municipal court found the defendant guilty of OWI and dismissed a blood alcohol count charge without finding guilt, the defendant's appeal of the OWI conviction did not give the circuit court jurisdiction to hear the BAC charge absent an appeal of the dismissal. Town of Menasha v. Bastian, 178 Wis. 2d 191
, 503 N.W.2d 382
(Ct. App. 1993).
There is no statutory or constitutional requirement that a circuit court must hold a hearing or request briefs when conducting a transcript review under sub. (5). This section, when considered as a whole, affords municipal court appellants a meaningful right to be heard. City of Middleton v. Hennen, 206 Wis. 2d 347
, 557 N.W.2d 818
(Ct. App. 1996), 95-3054
Appealing Municipal Court Judgments to Circuit Court. Andregg. Wis. Law. March 2006.