Receiver & Jury Management - Jury service FAQ
How was I chosen?
Your name was randomly selected (by computer) from voter registration and driver’s license records. Generally, all U.S. Citizens age 18 and older are liable for jury duty in the county in which they reside. You must be able to communicate in English. If you have ever been convicted of a felony, you must have had your rights restored. You were chosen because you are eligible and able to serve.
What happens when I report for jury duty?
Jurors are instructed to report to the jury assembly room and check in with the jury manager. The presiding judge will come into the assembly room to address the jurors and answer any questions. You will stay in the assembly room where we provide coffee, water, and magazines until you are called by panels to go into the courtroom for jury selection. You are welcome to bring a book to read while waiting in the jury assembly room, and restrooms are located close by.
In the courtroom, the judge will tell you about the case, and introduce the lawyers and others who are involved in it.
Next is the questioning process called voir dire, which means “to speak the truth.” Counsel from both sides will question you and other members of the panel to find out if you have any knowledge about the case, any personal interest in it, or any feelings that might make it hard for you to be impartial. Usually a panel of twelve jurors is selected to serve on a case.
How long will I serve?
Jury service is for one week or until the completion of the trial if you are on a case that goes beyond one week. Most of our trials last no more than a day or two – some less than a day. You may serve on more than one jury during your juror service week. If chosen to serve on a jury, please arrive on time and return promptly after breaks and lunch. The trial cannot proceed until all jurors are present.
What should I wear?
Dress comfortably. Suits and ties, heels and skirts, are not necessary. But don’t get too informal – shorts, halter or tank tops are not appropriate in court. Hats are not allowed unless worn for religious purposes.
What if I have an emergency?
Because your absence could delay a trial, it is important that you report each day you are required to. If a real emergency occurs – a sudden illness, accident or death in the family – tell the court staff immediately so that the trial can be scheduled around you.
What types of cases will I hear?
Jury cases are either criminal or civil.
Civil cases are disputes between private citizens, corporations, governments, government agencies, or organizations. Usually, the party that brings the suit is asking for money damages for some alleged wrong that has been done. The party that brings the suit is called the plaintiff; the one being sued is called the defendant.
A criminal case is brought by the state, or city, or county against one or more persons accused of committing a crime. In these cases, the state, city, or county is the plaintiff, and the accused person is the defendant.