Request deferral
Check your state laws
How to speak to the Judge
Sample Letter
You've got nothing to lose
Contact the Media
My state has Family Friendly jury duty laws, and I wasn't excused!
Substitute care problems
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Important! If the court requires you to report to the courthouse in person, YOU MUST SHOW UP, or else you may face severe consequences!

Click here if your state already has Family Friendly Jury Duty and you were NOT excused. (believe it or not, it happens!)




How to speak to the Judge


Make sure that you:

  • Dress appropriately to make a good impression.

  • Try to bring your kids (or dependent family member if possible) to make your point that you REALLY canít get a sitter!
    (If you donít bring your kids, expect to be asked, ďWhoís taking care of your kids now?Ē)

  • Bring a copy of your letter requesting deferral.

  • Bring along your spouse or a friend for moral support. This is especially helpful if your kids need to use the bathroom, etc. Itís good to have someone keep an eye on your kids when you canít!

  • Be prepared to spend a lot of time in the Courthouse, waiting in line to speak to the Judge. Even if your child cries, do NOT leave your place in line.

  • Expect to pass through security checkpoints equipped with metal detectors, etc.

    • Frequently, prohibited items include cameras, recorders, cell phones, etc.

    • Remember to present your claim check to retrieve such items upon departing the courthouse.

When you speak to the Judge (or jury commissioner):

  • Important! Respectfully ask him/her for their name and title and be sure to write it down correctly. (Youíre entitled to know who youíre speaking with!)

  • Tell him/her you would be glad to serve on a jury when your child is older or when your family caregiving situation has changed.

  • Convince him/her that you are NOT trying to ďget outĒ of Jury Duty, you are only seeking a temporary deferment!
    You should mention why making substitute caregiving arrangements at the last moment is impossible in your case. For example:

    • You are breastfeeding your baby.

    • Your neighbors and friends are not at home during the day.

    • Your family members live out of town.

    • Quality substitute care is not available on a temporary, last minute basis.

    • The cost of daycare is prohibitive for a one-income family.

    • You would not make a good juror if youíre frantically worrying about your child or other dependent family member.

Unfortunately, as logical and compelling as the above reasons are, they may or may not work for you. I can tell you from personal experience that they did NOT work for me!

Click here if the above didnít work, and youíve got nothing to lose!


Disclaimer:  Legal information is not legal advice.  Only a lawyer can provide you with legal advice.



 Copyright ©2002-2008 Last updated Tuesday March 25, 2008