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Jury Duty Questions  
User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4171 times:

This Monday (I have to strat calling Friday) I have to go to jury duty for the first time ever and I would like to know what goes on? I have a few question

1. When I start calling what do I tell them?
2. When I get to the court what will happen?
3. Is it only the 1 day I have to go? I do not have my own car and my dad is going to miss work on Monday so I can borrow his car. After that I will not have the use of his car anymore.


I am a very shy person to begin with and I am extremly nervous just thinking about going and having to talking to a judge!


Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineiairallie From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4162 times:

Go to the courts website and they usually have Q & A section or FAQ's section which should answer many of your questions.

You many never even have to go in. So take it one step at a time and don't stress over events that may never happen.

Is there public transportation where you live? If there is the court isn't going to care if you have a car or not. Jury duty is a civic responsibilty that is not just for those who have cars.

How many days depends on if you get used or not and on the case.

Don't stress about talking to a judge it is not big deal just be honest and respectful of everyone and you have nothing to worry about. The judge isn't out to get you. Has your shyness ever been diagonsed as a medical condition (like social anxiety) by a medical professional?


User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7966 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4155 times:

I have always been the plaintiff, and of course not in the U.S., so I cannot help, other than to say that speaking to a judge does not need to make you nervous. Think of him/her as a teacher or journalist who won't report a faux pas if one occurs..

However I found this website, which might clear some things up:
http://www.nyjuror.gov/users/wwwucs/juryQandA.shtml



I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4129 times:

Quoting iairallie (Reply 1):
Is there public transportation where you live? If there is the court isn't going to care if you have a car or not. Jury duty is a civic responsibilty that is not just for those who have cars.

Well there is but there is 2 problems with that. 1. I am unemployed now and can not afford the tickets. 2. There is one train that leaves the town where the cout is at 2:30pm, the next train is not until 11:30pm. I do not know exactly how much train tickets are but it is a 2 hour car drive to get to the courhouse from where I live, so I guess it would be pretty high price.

Quoting iairallie (Reply 1):
Don't stress about talking to a judge it is not big deal just be honest and respectful of everyone and you have nothing to worry about. The judge isn't out to get you. Has your shyness ever been diagonsed as a medical condition (like social anxiety) by a medical professional?

I have never been to a doctor to diagonse me but my family thinks I should go. They think I have social anxiety.



Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
User currently offlineMWHCVT From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2008, 740 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4126 times:

I've done jury duty, it is actually interesting when you have a case but it can also be really boring, in the UK you generally get called for 2 weeks. In my two weeks I only had one case and this lasted for all of 2 days. However if you get selected for a big case you can be on jury duty for weeks or even months.

My advise would be to take a book or a couple of magazines, but I would imagine that the Clark of the court or whatever the US equivalent is will advise you on court protocols and procedures.

In the UK we will get a call up to our local court, however it is possible that you will then be called up to travel to a court elsewhere in the country.



Must think up a new one soon, slow moving brain trying to get into gear ;)
User currently offlineAirstud From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2759 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4122 times:

Different jurisdictions have different systems. I've twice been summoned for jury duty in the City and County of San Francisco, once for criminal court where I had to report to the icky Hall o' Justice on Bryant Street, and once for an asbestos lawsuit being heard in the shnazzy new state courts building in the Civic Center.

You'll show up at wherever your summons tells you to show up at, announce yourself, then take a seat in the waiting room (bring a book!) until your name, or group number, or color code (at the Hall of Justice we got color codes!) gets called, then you'll file into a certain courtroom where you may or may not be seated on the jury for the case that court is hearing.

Basically, jury duty is like a multi-round lottery. You're in the "big pool" (in the waiting room) until your name/code gets called, then you're in the "little pool" of potential jurors for one case. You will either be seated in that jury, excused by the judge, or just plain not questioned in the first place - they might already have the first 12-14 folks ('cause some cases have 12 plus a number of "alternate" i.e. backup jurors) seated before it's even your turn to be questioned. If you're not seated, you may have to report back to the big pool, or you may be done with your duty then and there. It's different in different jurisdictions.

For the Hall of Justice thingy, we were assigned a color code and given a phone number that we had to call each day for two weeks. It played a recording that told us which color codes were expected to report to the Hall o' Justice the next day. (The colors were elegant too, they were like "navy" and "amber" and "wine," none of this blue, orange, or red hoi polloi.)

When you're in the "little pool," there will be several dozen folks in there with you. You'll likely be given a questionnaire to fill out; based on your answers the lawyers for either side might have additional questions for you. They're trying to uncover any biases you might have - for instance, if you had a family member who was made sick by asbestos poisoning they might not want you on an asbestos jury due to partiality concerns. Ultimately it's up to the judge.
You can request on your own that the judge excuse you, but only if serving on the jury is going to cause extreme financial hardship.

As I said above, if you get excused (or not questioned in the first place), you go back downstairs, maybe to be called again, maybe to be given a color code to call in with for two weeks, or something else. Depends on your jurisdiction.

Let us know what happens!!  

Edit: seems like you might be eligible for $$ hardship excuse - your post went up while I was typing  Smile

[Edited 2010-10-12 15:22:16]


Pancakes are delicious.
User currently offlineJBirdAV8r From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 4491 posts, RR: 21
Reply 6, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4113 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Thread starter):
I am extremly nervous just thinking about going and having to talking to a judge!

The judge will be happy you bothered to show up for jury duty! That is, unless you have "I'm a drug dealer/rapist/murderer" plastered across your forehead  



I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4108 times:

Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 6):
The judge will be happy you bothered to show up for jury duty!

I have thought about not showing up, but I don't want to have to pay a fine I can not afford or get put in jail. (I have no idea what happens if you don't show up)



Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
User currently offlineShyFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4098 times:

Your summons should provide the information you need to know.

Quoting iairallie (Reply 1):
You many never even have to go in. So take it one step at a time and don't stress over events that may never happen.

   The last time I was placed on jury duty, I had to co down to the courthouse with everyone else that had been called. Nothing substantial happened, it was more of an orientation session. From that point forward, I had to call a phone number to see if I needed to appear the next day or not. I never had to appear.

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 7):
I have thought about not showing up

Not a good idea to not show up. It probably varies by jurisdiction, but a warrant may be issued for your arrest for contempt of court.


User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7966 posts, RR: 12
Reply 9, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4100 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 3):
I am unemployed now and can not afford the tickets.


Aren't you going to get reimbursed? Or can your family cover the expenses?

[Edited 2010-10-12 15:53:19]


I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4085 times:

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 9):
Aren't you going to get reimbursed?

The courts will give me $40 a day. A lot of that will go towards gas to get to the courthouse (it's a 2 hour drive)



Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
User currently offlineajd1992 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4072 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 7):
I have thought about not showing up, but I don't want to have to pay a fine I can not afford or get put in jail. (I have no idea what happens if you don't show up)

At least in the UK, you will be arrested for not turning up. Your employer MUST give you time off for it, so you have no excuse.

The only way you can get out of it (At least here, anyway) Is if you aren't in the country (proved with booked flights/hotels etc) or if you in someway would be impaired against the defendant (like if you were racist and they were black, for example.)

You'll more than likely have to go for more than 1 day, I will guarantee it.


User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21857 posts, RR: 55
Reply 12, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4067 times:

First of all, show up. Disregarding the possible penalties for failing to appear, jury duty is part of your civic obligation as a citizen of the country. In order to have a justice system based on trials by a jury of peers, you've got to have jurors. Don't be one of those people who treat jury duty as something to be evaded at all costs. Go, be perfectly honest about your situation (your nervousness and your transportation problems), and see what happens. Remember, you're not the one on trial here - the judge is not going to perform some sort of harsh interrogation on you. You may not even see a judge - I didn't when I went (they had some sort of clerk running things).

It sounds like you're the sort of person who isn't going to be selected for a case because of hardship, which is fine - you'll probably be done after a day or so. Don't stress over it.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlinedxing From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4055 times:

What kind of court this is will determine a lot. Two hours away seems like a long way off for a local or even county jurisdiction on Long Island where your profile says you're from. Is this a federal court in NYC? Most of the times I've been called it has been traffic court or county court. Sat around for most of the morning, went into a big room that was essentially a holding pen. After a few hours the baliff came out and said that all pending cases that day had been settled out of court and we were free to go.

User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4044 times:

Quoting dxing (Reply 13):
Two hours away seems like a long way off for a local or even county jurisdiction on Long Island where your profile says you're from. Is this a federal court in NYC?

The coutroom where I have to go is in Riverhead NY. I live near Islip airport in Suffolk county. It may not be 2 hours to get there (one way) it may be more like a hour and a half I think. I drove out there with the family lots of times but I never actually timed it.

[Edited 2010-10-12 16:53:14]


Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
User currently offlinedxing From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4027 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 14):
The coutroom where I have to go is in Riverhead NY

Ok, so it is a county court. Pretty much as I described above. Do not not show up. Call a couple of days in advance and see if they still need you to show up as well as the day before. Let the clerk know what your family situation is and perhaps they will exempt you.


User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13195 posts, RR: 15
Reply 16, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 4016 times:

This link, along with the information on the Summons, should answer most of your questions:

http://www.nyjuror.gov/countyinformation/?suffolk

One thing I noted is that each juror candidate is given a number. The courts will publish a range of numbers for those who have to appear in this call up on the linked site or in a recorded phone message and if required to attend, give assignments to which court facility you will report to. It site also notes a special LIRR service that recently was created for Jury Duty access to the courts. Maybe you will get really lucky and don't have to show up (that has happened 3 out of 4 times I have been noticed for Jury Duty here in New Jerse the last 30 years)

Unfortunately River head is a real long haul for most in the county. I have been to those facilities many years ago and by car it can be more than an hour from Riverhead to the Nassau Co. border.

I would note that throughout the USA, Jury Duty has become a greater hardship for many. Many are unemployed or don't have employers who compensate for such duty. Many have difficulty as to access as don't drive, don't have a car, public transit options stink. Compensation by the courts may be less than the cost of transit fares, gas or even a lunch, so one could lose money. Others are taking care of family members, children and can't afford a sitter. Then you have those that fear getting stuck in a long and boring trial.


User currently offlineWarRI1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 9290 posts, RR: 12
Reply 17, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 4007 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 10):
The courts will give me $40 a day. A lot of that will go towards gas to get to the courthouse (it's a 2 hour drive)

In R.I. we get 15 dollars. We can get across the whole state in less than an hour. I think you should go, it is a learning experiance. If you have second thoughts about your nerves, it is easy to get excused, they do not want anyone serving who does not feel they can serve, it just causes problems. You can still say you served, and I doubt if you will get called again. I asked to be excused once because of the type of case, told the judge, no problem.



It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
User currently offlineflymia From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7273 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3998 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Thread starter):
This Monday (I have to strat calling Friday) I have to go to jury duty for the first time ever and I would like to know what goes on? I have a few question

Seems like this is a big hassle for you. I would have called the day you got the summons in and tell them about your situation. Jury duty is a civic responsibility, but I should not put a hardship on citizents. Your dad is missing work for you to go to jury duty.

Make sure you tell them about your transportation problems so they do not pick you.
I was called into jury duty but I am an out of state student, so they told me to call when I get back. Its a pain but its something you do have to do at somepoint.



"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlineiairallie From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 3985 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 3):
Well there is but there is 2 problems with that. 1. I am unemployed now and can not afford the tickets. 2. There is one train that leaves the town where the cout is at 2:30pm, the next train is not until 11:30pm. I do not know exactly how much train tickets are but it is a 2 hour car drive to get to the courhouse from where I live, so I guess it would be pretty high price.

Thats pretty sucky were were talking in some of my classes about how hard it can be to get juries in some areas because of the large geographical area they cover.

Quoting Airstud (Reply 5):
Edit: seems like you might be eligible for $$ hardship excuse - your post went up while I was typing

Could be.

When I got my notice it had several boxes to check on it regarding ability to serve. Some were basically automatic exemptions I can't remember all the catagories. Did your notice have anything like this?

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 3):
I have never been to a doctor to diagonse me but my family thinks I should go. They think I have social anxiety

Kinda a catch 22 isn't it the anxiety makes you dread going to face a new situation even though that situation can possibly help the anxiety. My brother had severe social anxiety and it really interfered with his ability to enjoy life. He did get treatment and had varying levels of sucess with the different treatments. I wish you the best it can be a really crippling issue.

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 7):
I have thought about not showing up, but I don't want to have to pay a fine I can not afford or get put in jail. (I have no idea what happens if you don't show up)

Don't do that remind yourself that the benefits of going outweigh the benefits of staying and that the consequences of going (anxiety) are not as bad as the consequences of not going.

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 10):
The courts will give me $40 a day. A lot of that will go towards gas to get to the courthouse (it's a 2 hour drive)

Not sure what you are driving but 40 bucks will get you a lot further than a 3 hour round trip. I can fill my tank for less and drove all the way through northern Utah, Wyoming and into Nebraska before I had to fill up.

Quoting Mir (Reply 12):
Go, be perfectly honest about your situation (your nervousness and your transportation problems), and see what happens.

Great advice. It would help if you had a bonifide medical professional vouch for you on the nervousness issue. But non the less be open about your difficulties and they may be sympathetic.


User currently onlineOA412 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 5373 posts, RR: 25
Reply 20, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 3974 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Thread starter):
When I start calling what do I tell them?

I don't know how it works where you live, but where I live it's just a recording that tells you whether or not you have to show up.

Quoting dragon-wings (Thread starter):
I am extremly nervous just thinking about going and having to talking to a judge!

Don't sweat it. It's quite possible that you may not even be asked to show up. It happens all the time. Also, no need to worry about speaking to the judge. I've had to testify in a jury trial before and it wasn't anything to afraid of.

Quoting ShyFlyer (Reply 8):
Not a good idea to not show up. It probably varies by jurisdiction, but a warrant may be issued for your arrest for contempt of court.

  



Hughes Airwest - Top Banana In The West
User currently offlinedragon-wings From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3995 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 3961 times:

Quoting flymia (Reply 18):
Not sure what you are driving but 40 bucks will get you a lot further than a 3 hour round trip. I can fill my tank for less and drove all the way through northern Utah, Wyoming and into Nebraska before I had to fill up.

It's a 1998 Chevy Blazer. I never had to fill up my dads truck before so I just guessed most of the $40 will go for gas. I have no idead how much $ it will take to fill the car.

Quoting iairallie (Reply 19):
Could be.

When I got my notice it had several boxes to check on it regarding ability to serve. Some were basically automatic exemptions I can't remember all the catagories. Did your notice have anything like this?

I don't remember.

Quoting dxing (Reply 15):
Ok, so it is a county court. Pretty much as I described above.

My dad says the Riverhead court handles traffic/parking violations, town code offenses, small claims, and criminal arraignments are conducted there.



Don't give up don't ever give up - Jim Valvano
User currently offlineokie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3188 posts, RR: 3
Reply 22, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 3946 times:

Quoting dragon-wings (Reply 10):

The courts will give me $40 a day


$12 per day in Oklahoma.
Some counties have the phone in procedure after the first day, others you get to sit there until you are excused which could be up to 2 weeks. The county in which I live you get to sit there. The first time I was called up sat there for 3 1/2 days with a large group. The first day had quite a few small groups sent to different court rooms for selection and then the ones that were rejected came back to sit. Small group of potential jurors (25) usually went to civil trials, larger groups (50 ) went to criminal trials. Then occasionally groups dispatched to different court rooms as required for different trials later in the week. Bring lots of reading material. If you really are interested most courts have a record of trials to be held on the web or a journal record.

Quoting Mir (Reply 12):
Go, be perfectly honest about your situation (your nervousness and your transportation problems), and see what happens


I saw a many of potential juror show up with a gaggle of children claiming to not have childcare. The State Dept. of Human Services (welfare) was there with their computers to check if they were paying for such service and I believe the poop hit the fan a few times. Some had Doctors excuses but they had to have a conference with a judge, some came back to the pool others never came back. Some had outstanding warrants and were handcuffed and rearrested on the spot. Quite a show really the first morning.

The second time I got called for Jury Duty I got stuck on a criminal trial for 5 weeks. Quite a learning experience. Lets just say that the prosecution would get busy trying to make Mr. Rogers look like a pedophile and the defence was busy trying to make Jeffery Dahmer look like a saint. Needless to say I honestly believe that the facts in the case without all the hoopla could have been presented in about 3.5 hours.
Many of the employers of the jurors were not happy about the length of the trial and were threatening the jurors with loss of jobs or other issues and several of the jurors complained to the bailiff who passed word on to the Judge. I will not mention any names but a large car rental company who has call center here in OKC which has a bit of a reputation for not treating its employees very well was the employer of one of the jurors. About 3 weeks into the trial about mid- morning right in the middle of the trial the doors bust open to the courtroom and in walk two plain clothed policemen with a guy in handcuffs and shackles between them. The judge had dispatched the policemen to the workplace to retrieve the HR/supervisor of the juror who worked for the company. Apparently the guy had been a little testy on the phone with the judge the previous afternoon. The judge stopped the trial and gave a lecture to the guy about "civil duties" and that maybe he needed to spend some time to think things out, he then ordered the policemen to take him to a cell. The next morning the judge announced that sometime during the evening that the gentleman from previous day had a change in his thought process about civil duties.

Okie


User currently offlineNorthstarBoy From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1872 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 20 hours ago) and read 3925 times:
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I was called twice during the 7 years i lived in southern california. The first time, we never even made it to a court room, we sat around in a waiting room for probably 3/4 of the day then got released. The second time we were brought up to a court room, told to sit outside and not look into the courtroom, we were specifically told to stay away from the court room door (which had a window in it) or we'd get in big trouble. Finally, a bailiff came out and released us. The most frustrating thing about the whole process was being told absolutely nothing. No information about the potential case or the potential defendant were ever given we weren't even told why we were no longer needed. I think in the second case, a potential juror asked the bailiff why weren't needed and the bailiff couldn't tell us.

I'd like to serve on a jury just to see how the whole process works vs what i've seen on tv, but I also found it very frustrating just because it feels like the potential jurors are treated like sh*t by the system, they're told they are the most important component of the system and yet have absolutely no rights.

As for what i'd like to have been told, just the nature of the offense and the age and gender of the defendant would have been nice to know, so I know a little of what i'm getting myself into.



Why are people so against low yields?! If lower yields means more people can travel abroad, i'm all for it
User currently onlineha763 From United States of America, joined Jan 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 5
Reply 24, posted (4 years 2 months 1 week 17 hours ago) and read 3909 times:
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I don't see why you don't just take the special Jury Duty train if you get called in. The round trip will be around $20. If you cannot afford that, how are you supposed to afford to fill up the gas tank? You also said are unemployed. There is no reason to not show up unless you already have an interview lined up for that day.

25 DeltAirlines : It's 60 miles round trip from Islip to Riverhead. Even if the truck only gets 15 mpg, it's no more than $12 - plenty of cash left over to pay for park
26 Cadet985 : In Philadelphia, we serve for one day or one trial. For this, we are given a whopping $9.00 per day. For me to get downtown from my house and back co
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