3-6-101. Establishment of court. (1) A city with a population of 4,000 or more, according to the last federal census, may have a court, known as the municipal court of the city of (designating the name of the city) of the state of Montana. The court must be a court of record. The municipal court shall assume continuing jurisdiction over all pending city court cases in the city in which the municipal court is established.
(2) A city may have a municipal court only if the governing body of the city elects by a two-thirds majority vote to adopt the provisions of this chapter by ordinance and, in the ordinance, provides the manner in which and time when the municipal court is to be established and is to assume continuing jurisdiction over all pending city court cases. If a city judge is not an attorney and the office is abolished because a municipal court is established, the ordinance must provide that the time when the establishment of the municipal court takes effect is the date on which the municipal court judge elected at the next election held under 3-6-201 begins the municipal court judge's term of office. The ordinance must be consistent with the provisions of this chapter.