Town Justice Courts play a vital role in the New York State Unified Court System. Justice Courts have a very broad but limited jurisdiction in matters affecting the local community. It is for this reason that Justice Courts are often called "the Courts closest to the people."
The Town Court is authorized to handle matters involving the prosecution of misdemeanors and violations that are committed within the town. The Town Court also conducts arraignments and preliminary hearings in felony matters. In addition the court hears Vehicle and Traffic Law misdemeanors and traffic infractions.
Civil jurisdiction of the Town Court is limited to $3000.00 for small claims proceedings. The Court also handles landlord/tenant matters that may result in an eviction as well as a money judgment for back rent. Often, individual litigants do not use an attorney in these matters and are not required to do so.