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Feeling Nostalgic? The archives > Hey, how do I get out of jury duty?

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message 1: by Gåry! (new)

Gåry! (garyneill) See above.

message 2: by Lori (new)

Lori If it's possible, I highly recommend it. It was one of the most interesting experiences of my life. "Innocent until proven guilty" will never mean the same thing once you decide what it means with a real person.

But if you truly can't, just say you'd like to be able to do it but it's not possible at this time because of economic reasons, and then specify. Or why you don't have the time now. Example, school.

Employers are supposed to pay your salary while you're on a jury, but if you are self-employed, then that's all you need to cite.

I've been getting out of it for 12 years now because I need to be around for the kid, but he's getting old enough now that I guess it's time for me to serve.

message 3: by Dave (new)

Dave Russell Well, if it's federal court, it's very difficult unless you have some medical condition. If it's state court, I don't know about Texas, but in CA you can get a letter from your employer saying it would be too big an economic burden.

message 4: by Matt (new)

Matt | 819 comments "Some people try to get out of jury duty by lying. You don't have to lie. Tell the judge the truth. Tell him you'd make a terrific juror because you can spot guilty people [snaps fingers:] just like that! Tell him it's all about the distance between the eyes. Have a little ruler and measure the judge, he'll like that."
-George Carlin

message 5: by Lori (last edited Jan 20, 2009 11:17PM) (new)

Lori Ah Carlin. Damn, I miss him.

message 6: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Maybe you won't even have to lie...maybe you'll go the first day and they won't like the looks of you.

Liz Lemon on 30 Rock dressed up like Princess Leia get out of jury duty, which both turned on the Star Wars fanboys AND got her out of jury duty. Mission Accomplished. So, Gary, you could always dress like Princess Leia.

I've never been called for jury duty. I must be on a "reject" list somewhere. That's fine with me.

message 7: by Lori (new)

Lori Nah, Gary should dress as the Wookie.

message 8: by [deleted user] (new)

I've had jury duty three times, and sat on a trial once. It was an interesting experience, and my reasoning behind not getting out of jury duty was because if I needed a jury, I would want someone like me on the jury.

message 9: by Meen (new)

Meen (meendee) | 1733 comments Well, if it's a potential death penalty case and you're anti-death penalty and say so when they ask, you will be rejected.

message 10: by Gus (new)

Gus Sanchez (gussanchez) Use a lot of racist profanity. Not that it's ever cool to use the N word, but if you want to get out of jury duty, say something like "hang all the (insert racist description of an ethnic group here)" often.

Even better still is if you shout those racist obscenities in a civil trial. Not only are you crazy, but you're inappropriate, too.

PS - I have never used this method to get out of jury duty. In fact, I can't recall the last time I got a jury duty notice.

message 11: by Meen (new)

Meen (meendee) | 1733 comments I've never gotten a jury duty notice.

Books Ring Mah Bell This is how Gary:

message 13: by Sandy (new)

Sandy (FoggedIn) | 138 comments I live in FL, where it isn't easy to get out of jury duty, BUT, if you have had any dealings with a court in the past, including a divorce, that has tainted your attitude toward the judicial system, or if you are a professional person (e.g. teacher) they usually don't want you because they think you'll be able to translate the obfuscation

message 14: by Richard (new)

Richard | 347 comments I wonder how people would react if they randomly selected members of the audience to judge American Idol?

To an outsider like me this whole "jury of your peers" thing is quite terrifying. I happen to know my peers and I certainly wouldn't want them judging me.

message 15: by Richard (new)

Richard | 347 comments Okay, don't discuss the American judicial system with me. Perhaps if I throw in some underwear?


message 16: by Gus (new)

Gus Sanchez (gussanchez) Richard, if your peers smoked weed, like your country allows them to, I would be more than happy to have them judge me. As long as they passed the weed over.

message 17: by Richard (last edited Jan 22, 2009 09:41AM) (new)

Richard | 347 comments That would give a whole new meaning to "justice of the peace" and "high court judge".

And lest we forget: "weed, the jury."

message 18: by Gus (new)

Gus Sanchez (gussanchez) Judge: And how do you find the defendant?

Jury: Stoned. Very stoned.

message 19: by Richard (new)

Richard | 347 comments "We had a hard time finding him, your honour. But it was worth it. He's alright. You should just let him go, man. Like, release the prisoner, you know? Freedom. He needs to be free, man. Like, he's not guilty, man. Peace."
"I can dig that, man. Has he, like, promised not to do it again?"
"Crossed his heart, man."
"Is that him on the floor?"
"Yeah, I think so, man. And that proves he's innocent."
"How's that?"
"He didn't even move when you said: would the defendant please rise? So, like, maybe he's not the defendant?"
"Good point, man. He looks innocent to me."
"He IS innocent, man. Like, until proven guilty."
"So, is that how you found him?"
"Yeah, man, that's how we found him, like, not guilty in a big way. 'Cos he's not moving, man, so how can he, like, perpetrate as a defendant?"
"You got me, man. Case closed."

message 20: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10826 comments What's wrong with participating in the process? Just curious.

message 21: by Lobstergirl, el principe (new)

Lobstergirl | 24451 comments Mod
I want to know how to get on jury duty. Specifically, I would like to serve on the next Blagojevich jury. It's been years since I got a jury summons. I think they've lost my name.

message 22: by Lobstergirl, el principe (new)

Lobstergirl | 24451 comments Mod
Yeah, roll of the dice....I just thank God I am not of the criminal class (yet anyway) and am not confronted with these scary decisions.

message 23: by [deleted user] (new)

Forego showering for two weeks, go on a three-day wine-and-reds bender just prior to your report date, and carry a hand gun.

message 24: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Paschen | 7202 comments I loved my one time on jury duty. The charge was possession of burglary tools. We decided he was not guilty, just stupid. It was really fun, and I enjoyed the rest of the jurors. The lawyers were pretty funny too.

message 25: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments I get called every year, never fail, as a non-felon living in Baltimore City.

I used to get out of it by writing to them to say that I had a tour booked and would be away - it worked, and it was true.

First time I went, I spent a lovely day reading and watching Will Smith movies and wasn't picked.

Second time I went I was picked for a minor two day criminal trial. It was very interesting, and I'm glad I did it.

Third time I checked the machine the night before and my number was too high so I didn't need to go.

Fourth time I was there an hour when a water main blew in the street below and we got sent home with time served.

The trial was interesting and I don't mind doing it, but I'd be scared to get a drug or murder trial.

message 26: by Lobstergirl, el principe (new)

Lobstergirl | 24451 comments Mod
The only time I even made it into the courtroom, I was young, maybe 21. It was a civil case. A woman had died in the middle of having a therapeutic abortion (an abortion to save her own life) because a hospital worker had put a breathing tube into her esophagus instead of her lungs. Her husband was suing the hospital. I didn't get picked.

message 27: by Margot (new)

Margot | 103 comments My great aunt made a big fuss trying to get out of (british) jury duty. She was unable to find relief, so had to go on the day despite feeling unwell. She was chosen, and while the case was proceeding on that day she passed away in the jury box. She just slipped away.
She passed away about 15 years ago. The funny thing is her name was Ruth Ellis, the same name as the last judicially executed female in the UK.
Now whenever any of our extended family are notified of jury duty, we write back with our story and our concern of the stress that jury duty might cause us, recollecting our aunt.
Too late to help for last time, but I have a maiden aunt you could try courting for next time, if you are particularly determined to avoid jury duty.

message 28: by Meels (new)

Meels (amelia) I have a family member who is a cop. That usually gets me eliminated. Though I've only gotten that far in the procedure twice.

message 29: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 3475 comments I was called during the pre-planning week for teachers and told that the trial was a capital case and would last two weeks, minimum.

The first week of class, especially in high school, is the most important. It sets the tone for the rest of the year. I didn't want to be absent.

When I was called to the stand, I said that I'd vote for the death penalty if I couldn't be sure that the defendant would be imprisoned for life without parole. I was excused.

Now that I don't have any work obligations, I'll gladly serve jury duty.

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