Oceana County Michigan

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What is an Informal Hearing?

An informal hearing is a court proceeding held to decide whether you are responsible for the traffic offense in which you are charged. It is your opportunity to defend yourself, to ask questions, and to have witnesses testify in your favor. The testimony is under oath, but the hearing is much less formal than a trial.

How is the hearing different from a trial?

The Magistrate, rather than the District Judge, usually presides over the hearing. Neither party may be represented by an attorney. There is no jury and no court reporter. The Magistrate’s final decision will be based on preponderance, a 51 to 49 percent majority of the evidence, not on proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Intent is not a criteria whether an individual is responsible or not responsible. The Magistrate CANNOT reduce or waive points on the violations for which you are charged.

How do I defend myself at the hearing?

You will testify on your own behalf, you may have witnesses testify on your behalf, and you may ask questions of the witnesses against you. It is expected, however, that any questioning will be concise and courteous. Keep in mind that the citing officer may also bring witnesses, so in general, remember that the hearing is your “day in court”, so come prepared.

What if the hearing date I receive does not work?

You are allowed one (1) adjournment from the original hearing date scheduled. The officer is also allowed this opportunity. NO ADJOURNMENTS WILL BE ALLOWED WITHIN SEVEN (7) DAYS OF THE SCHEDULED HEARING DATE.

  • If you are found responsible (sentenced) at your informal hearing, be prepared to immediately pay all fines and costs in full (Michigan Court Rule 1.110). The Court will accept cash, check, money order or credit cards (3.5% fee added for credit/debit card transactions).
  • If you do not wish to proceed with your scheduled court hearing, all fines and costs must be paid at least 24 hours prior to your court date.

Contact 78th District Court

Staff

Honorable H. Kevin Drake
District Court Judge
Adriana Facundo
Magistrate / Court Administrator
Brandi Bruch
Chief Clerk / Deputy Magistrate
Cristine Ortwine
Deputy Clerk - Traffic Division
Luvy Conroy
Adult Probation and Collections Enforcement Officer

Oceana County Building

100 S. State Street, Suite L-15
P.O. Box 471
Hart, MI 49420
Phone: (231) 873-4530
Fax: (231) 873-1861

Hours

Monday - Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Send 78th District Court A Message

Oceana County News

Job Opportunity – County Administrator

Posted: January 19th, 2022
Oceana County is seeking qualified applicants for the position of County Administrator.  Interested applicants should review the Position Announcement
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Posted: January 7th, 2022
Invasive pest already confirmed in five southwest Michigan counties
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Oceana County Flag Design Contest Results

Posted: December 8th, 2021
Over the past few weeks, the Oceana County Board of Commissioners reviewed 240 designs for the first ever County
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Job Opportunity – FOC – Data Entry Operator

Posted: November 30th, 2021
Under the direction of the Friend of the Court, serves as receptionist and responds to a variety of procedural
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Upcoming Events

Jan27

Board of Commissioners Meeting

Oceana County Building
11:30am - 1:00pm
Feb3

Planning Commission Meeting

Oceana County Building
1:00pm - 3:00pm
Feb3

Parks & Recreation Commission Meeting

Oceana County Building
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Feb10

Board of Commissioners Meeting

Oceana County Building
11:30am - 1:00pm
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