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The judge and court staff work hard to reduce the time you spend waiting as a juror. However, waiting time cannot be completely eliminated. A trial is very important to the people involved and it is very important that things happen correctly. The law is also complex and many steps have to happen before, during, and after the trial. Try to be patient and come prepared with a book or other reading material to occupy your time while waiting. Court staff will try to explain delays when possible. Be assured everyone is working to avoid delays.
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If you cannot understand English and if you need assistance, a friend or a family member who can speak English can help to complete the online form, but you may have to appear in person in court in order to request a disqualification.
Remember that you have the ability to postpone jury service to a more convenient time. Since each court may have different instructions, read your summons carefully or contact your local jury office to find out the right way to request a postponement.
Michigan law (MCL 600.1348) makes it unlawful for any employer to fire or harass an employee who is summoned to court to serve as a juror. If you are harassed or fired, contact your local jury office or the judge assigned to your trial. The law also protects students and teachers.
Currently, jurors are paid $12.50 for a half day and $25 for a full day on the first day of service; and for each subsequent day of service, $20 for a half day and $40 for a full day, they serve either on a case or in the assembly room while available to be assigned to a case, plus 54.5 cents per mile, round trip, for mileage (MCL 600.1344).
Checks for jury service are computed at the completion of your service week are mailed to you at your home address. Checks should be received within two weeks after you complete service. Contact your local jury office if you have not received compensation or have questions.
If you have a dependent child or adult under your care, you may ask for a postponement or excuse from jury service by fax the question to 231-332-4049 or email Juror Response.
All people selected for jury service are selected at random. Names are selected randomly from State of Michigan driver license and personal identification card holder lists as required by Michigan law.
If in the past 12 months you have been called twice or have already served, contact your local jury office. Please let the jury clerk know that you have already served on a jury, including what court, and that you would like to clarify your current status as a juror. It is important for you to call to make sure the problem is cleared up. The certificate proves that you have served in case a question arises. If you were called but did not serve, keep your summons as a record. If you no longer have your summons or certificate of service, please contact the jury clerk of the court you served in and they will be able to provide you with the information needed.If you have been called again but it has been more than 12 months, your name has been randomly selected again. Please read the summons carefully and follow the directions.
If you need special accommodations (such as assistance with a wheelchair, hearing amplification, special seating), contact the local jury office and let them know what type of assistance you will need. If they cannot reasonably accommodate you, you may be excused from jury service.
The length of trials varies depending on how complex the issues are and how long jurors spend in deliberations. Most trials are completed within a few days or a week. The judge knows about how long the trial will take, and he or she will tell you the time frame when your group is called for jury selection.
Judges know how difficult long trials can be. Let the judge know whether it is a serious hardship for you to sit on a long trial. Be patient during this process because a lot of people have similar time concerns.
There are two types of trials that have juries:
Divorce trials do not have juries.
It depends. Judges decide whether jurors can take notes or ask questions during a trial.
The judge will take your privacy into consideration when making decisions about the case. The judge must balance the requirement in the federal Constitution that guarantees people a public and speedy trial on the one side against jurors' real concerns about privacy on the other side.
If you have concerns about privacy, please let the judge know. If a newspaper or television reporter, or a lawyer or a friend of one of the people involved in the case, approaches you during the trial, let the judge know immediately. Such contact is inappropriate during a trial. After the trial is over, the media and the parties in the case can contact you, but you do not have to talk to them. Call the judge in your case if you feel harassed.
Once the verdict is read in court by the clerk, the jury may be polled. Jurors are given a certificate for their service and can go home.Some jurors find it helpful to give the judge and attorneys feedback about the trial. Some jurors also ask fellow jurors for their phone numbers in order to discuss aspects of the case with other people who shared the same experience. If you do not want to be contacted after the trial, let the judge know.
Jury service is a civic duty that every eligible adult has. This service to your community is the most direct, hands-on involvement in government most citizens will experience.
If you honestly cannot serve, the law provides several undue hardship categories that can allow for an excuse for a summoned juror for up to one year. Email Juror Response or fax to 231-332-4049 the reason for your excuse. You may have to appear in court on the date on your summons in order to explain to the judge the reason for your excuse.
Yes. M.C.L. 600:1346 makes the following acts punishable as contempt of court: