Appearances & Pleas

A telephone call to the Court does not constitute an appearance.
Walking up to the Court cashier window and asking questions does not constitute an appearance.
Appearances can be made in two ways:
1. In person

2. By mail (fax, e-mail, and the drop-box are considered mail) There are some cases in which you cannot appear by mail and this will be explained below.
Please Read
An initial appearance on a citation (violation), on which you have NOT entered a plea, must be made by either yourself or your attorney. You cannot send a friend or family member to enter a plea for you and pay your citation.
The law requires that you appear in Court on your cases. If you were issued a citation, your appearance date and time is noted on the citation. If you were issued or mailed a summons, your appearance date and time is indicated in the summons. If you have been released on bond, you may call the Court office to schedule an appearance date or you (and your bondsman if applicable) will be mailed a bond hearing notice with your date and time to appear. In most circumstances you may appear by mail rather than in open Court.  We give everyone a ten (10) business day grace period when appearing by mail or in person to take care of a citation.  As stated previously, if you wish to appear in Court before the Judge, you MUST be on the Court docket. Walk ins will not be added to the Court session on the day of Court.
Circumstances in which you CANNOT appear by mail are:
You are a juvenile (10-16 years of age). All juveniles MUST appear in open Court on all violations with a parent or legal guardian pursuant to state law.

You are a minor (17-20) charged with an alcohol or tobacco related offense.

You have been mailed a Court summons ordering you to appear before the Judge for a show cause hearing, contempt hearing, indigent hearing, bond hearing, pre-trial hearing, or a trial, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Court.

You have received an official court summons or subpoena ORDERING you to appear in open Court, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Court.

 If you were cited for multiple violations or are already on a payment plan and/or deferred disposition with the Court, it is best to go ahead and appear before the Judge in open Court.
The Initial appearance
The first thing the Judge will ask you when you appear in open Court for the first time on a citation is how you want to plea to each violation you are charged with, this is called arraignment.
Failing to enter an appearance on your citation, either in person or by mail if applicable, will result in the issuance of a failure to appear or violate promise to appear and warrants for your arrest. 

Court Staff

Presiding Judge Michael Abbott
Presiding Judge

Judge Michael Abbott


 Chief Clerk of the Court

Katrina Smith, CMCCII


 Deputy Clerk / JCM 

Carla Flanigan 


Deputy Clerk

Ashley Thibodeaux

Contact Us

City of Vidor
Municipal Court
1330 First Street
Vidor, TX 77662
Telephone: (409) 769-7452
Fax #: (409) 769-5712

Deputy Clerk / JCM:

Office Hours:
Monday thru Friday
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Court check in begins 30 minutes prior to the session time. Dress code is strictly enforced. Click the following link for Courtroom dress code and decorum (rules).
Defendants that arrive late or are not dressed appropriately will be rescheduled.


The Municipal Court cannot give legal advice of any nature.

Court personnel are allowed to explain Court proceedings and procedures regarding misdemeanor cases filed in this Court only.

 If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney.