City Hall is now open to the public Monday - Thursday, 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. You are strongly encouraged to conduct business online, over the phone or by email, as offices will not be accessible to the public
for the foreseeable future. Please see below for more information on court appearances. Court sessions are set to resume on Wednesday, May 27th.
Our recommendations regarding your citation(s) are as follows:
•If you are pleading GUILTY or NO CONTEST: You may send in your plea by letter stating this or you can do nothing and we will enter a default judgment. Either way, you do not need
to appear in court. Our office will send you a letter (to the address listed on your citation) that gives you 60 days to pay and payment instructions. Monthly payment plans can be set up by calling the court office.
•If you are pleading NOT GUILTY: you may send in your plea stating this. Please contact the court office to schedule a pre-trial conference by phone or email.
•If you are appearing in regards to a Summons, Warrant, or case review, or you have other business or questions for the court, please call. We will do our best to help you over the phone or reschedule the matter to a later date.
Please contact our office by phone or email with any other questions. Our office is operating on limited staff and will do our best to answer your call or return your email as quickly as possible!
The Municipal Court is headed by the Municipal Judge and staffed by the Municipal Court Clerk and Judicial Assistants who ensure that traffic and ordinance citations issued by the City of La Crosse Police Department are processed for court. Court staff also monitors payments on citations, issues warrants and suspends driving privileges of delinquent payers.
The Municipal Court office is open Monday - Friday, 8:30AM - 5:00PM and is located on the 1st floor of City Hall, 400 La Crosse St., La Crosse, WI 54601. Municipal Court staff can be reached at (608) 789-7290.
Court is held every Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. for adults. A closed court session is also held on Wednesdays for juvenile defendants. Trials are scheduled on Thursday afternoons.
Can I reschedule my court date?Yes – in most cases. Initial appearances can be rescheduled by calling the court office, as long as you have not already been convicted. If you are ordered to appear in court because of delinquent payments, your court date cannot be rescheduled.
Can I take a class to get my underage drinking violation dismissed?No. We are aware that other local courts may do this, we do not.
Do I have to come to court to contest my citation?Yes. You will enter your plea in front of the judge and then have the opportunity to have a pre-trial conference with the city attorney. In most cases, cases can be resolved that same day. The prosecutor may find it necessary to continue your case or, where a resolution cannot be reached, will set your case for trial at a later date. If you’re not able to appear in court to contest your citation, call the court office for further instructions – an exception may be made, depending on your circumstances.
Do I need to hire an attorney to represent me?No, it is not necessary to hire an attorney to represent you. If you do chose to hire an attorney, your attorney may represent you at your initial appearance and/or trial.
Does Municipal Court offer public defenders?No. Citations handled in Municipal Court are not “criminal” charges, therefore public defenders are not available.
Is the citation on my record?The citation and report are kept in the Municipal Court office, and the Police Department. Traffic convictions and underage alcohol violations are also reported to the Wisconsin D.O.T. to be entered on your driving record. We do not publish our records online or to any other media. They are open records. If any person would like the records, they would need to contact our office or the police department directly.
When does my citation have to be paid by?If you are not contesting your citation, please send payment by your court date. If that is not feasible, the court office will hold your citation open for one week past your court date, then find you guilty by default and send you a notice to pay by the due date on the notice (within 60 days.)