Jury · Frequently Asked Questions

If you are unable to find the answer to your question on our web site and need an immediate response you may do the following:

  1. Contact a jury assembly room near you (see Jury Locations link on the left side navigation bar).

  2. Call 1-800-778-5879 (1-800-SRV-JURY). Agents are available between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

  3. Call (213) 974-5811 between 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. and from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. for assistance.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why must I serve jury duty?
A: The California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) Section 191 states, “The Legislature recognizes that trial by jury is a cherished constitutional right, and that jury service is an obligation of citizenship.” Jury duty is a responsibility that all qualified citizens must share. Without support from individuals like you, we could not maintain our jury pool, and thus, maintain the high quality of our judicial system.

Q: What are the reasons for which I may be excused?
A: California law and court policy establish the legal grounds for excuse from jury duty. Each request for excuse is reviewed on an individual basis by the Jury Commissioner or his or her staff based on the law and court policy.

Q: Why am I called for jury service every year, while my neighbor and friends never get called?
A: There could be a variety of reasons why your neighbors, friends, etc. have not been selected for jury duty. Potential jurors are selected completely at random. As such, your neighbors or friends may not have been selected for the jury master list. It is also possible that the individual may not be qualified to serve on jury duty.

Q: What will happen if I do not respond to a jury notice?
A: Failure to report for service on the day instructed may subject you to a fine of up to $1,500. In addition, if you are qualified to serve, you will still have to complete jury duty.

Q: Is it true that for One-Trial jury service I have only to serve for one day?
A: No. If you are asked to report for service and are not selected on any case on the day you are asked to report, your term of service is complete. But if you are selected to serve on a trial, or need to complete voir dire (process of being chosen as a juror on a trial) the term of service will be the length of that trial. The average trial lasts 5 to 7 days.

Q: For how many days must I serve?
A: It depends on whether you are selected on a jury panel. You are required to telephone the court beginning the weekend prior to your service as instructed on the summons to receive instructions on when to report for jury service. If you are not required to report during this five-day period your service is completed. If you are asked to report, and not selected on any case on the day you are asked to report, your term of service will be complete for 12 months. If you are selected on a case on your first day, you will serve until excused by the court. The average trial is 5 to 7 days.

Q: Why wasn’t I summoned to a courthouse closer to my home?
A: We make every effort to summons jurors to a court location closest to their home, but it is not always possible because of the needs of the parties seeking trials. All jurors are summoned by a computerized process. Jurors are summoned from a 20-mile radius of a given court. The assignment is made taking into consideration the location of the juror and the location of the court which needs jurors at the time the juror is summoned.

Q: Can I be transferred to another court location?
A: To change the service court location to which you were summoned, you must provide a legally sufficient reason in writing indicating why you are unable to report to the courthouse to which you have been randomly summoned. Only a true hardship is grounds for transfer. Inconvenience to you or your employer is not. The Jury Commissioner or his or her staff considers each request on an individual basis (see the Excuses, Postponements and Transfers Section).

Q: Can I volunteer for jury service?
A: California Code of Civil Procedure states “All persons selected for jury service shall be selected at random, from a source or sources inclusive of a representative cross section of the population of the area served by the court.” As such, accepting volunteers for jury service is not legally acceptable.

Q: What time is lunch?
A: At most courts, lunch is between 12:00 and 1:30 p.m.

Q: Can I postpone my jury service to a more convenient date?
A: Yes. You must register by telephone or online before you can request a postponement. Fill out Section A of the jury summons. Then call 1-800-778-5879 or select “My Jury Duty Portal” in the left side menu options to register yourself for jury duty. The telephone system or web portal will prompt you on how to postpone your jury service. You may only request a 30-90 day postponement on the web portal under the tab “Reschedule”. For postponements over 90 days please contact a jury representative at 1-800-778-5879, or speak to a Chat Agent online.

Q: When will I have to serve again?
A: You are only obligated to serve jury duty once every 12 months.

Q: Isn’t there an age limit for jury service?
A: No. As long as you are 18 years or older, you are eligible for jury service. California statute does not set an upper age limit. There is no upper age limit, as long as you feel you are healthy enough to serve, you may serve.

Q: My employer pays an unlimited number of days for jury duty. Does that mean that I will be called more often than other employees?
A: No. Selection for jury service is random. When you are summoned for jury duty we do not know who your employer is or the number of days that your employer pays for jury service.

Q: Why does the jury system target self-employed persons?
A: Jury selection is entirely random. We do not target any individual(s) based on employment status or for any other reasons. The California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) 197 states that random selection of jurors requires that “… all persons selected for jury service be selected at random, from a source or sources inclusive of a representative cross section of the population of the area serviced by the court…”.

Q: My employer does not pay for jury service – why can’t I be excused?
A: California Rules of Court Rule 2.1002 required that all courts in California implement a “One Trial” term of service. As such, stricter rules for excuse (Rule 2.1008) were implemented which require you to demonstrate an extreme hardship. Today, the fact that your employer does not pay you for jury duty does not qualify you to be excused. If serving jury duty would pose an extreme financial hardship, or you have a physical or mental disability or impairment that would prevent you from serving, you may request to be excused by completing Sections A, C, D, & G of your summons (for financial excuses).

Q: My doctor submitted a medical excuse for me on my summons last year. Why do I have to submit another one for this year?
A: Current California law and court policy does not authorize judicial officers, the Jury Commissioner or his or her staff to grant blanket excuses to an individual. Therefore, each medical excuse only applies to the specific jury summons for which it has been submitted and granted.

Q: I am a student, may I be excused from jury duty?
A: No. Full-time student status does not qualify as an excuse from service. You may postpone your jury duty to a time when you have school breaks.

Q: I am a teacher, may I be excused from jury duty?
A: No. Full-time teacher status does not qualify as an excuse from service. You may postpone your jury duty to an off-track period.

Q: The nature of my job (truck driver, graveyard shift, etc.) makes it difficult to call in for five consecutive days. What can I do?
A: Call the jury assembly room to which you have been summoned and we will make alternative arrangements for you to serve. However, please note that once you have been assigned to a trial court you must report as ordered by that court.

Q: I received a summons for jury service, but I just served less than a year ago at another court. Can I be excused?
A: Yes. Complete Section A of your summons and request to be excused based on your previous service in Section B, No. 13. Indicate the month, year, and court location where you served. If you have your certification of jury service indicating your previous JID Number, provide the number in Section D of your summons. You may also request an excuse online by selecting “My Jury Duty Portal” in the left side menu options.

Q: Why am I receiving duplicate summonses?
A: We receive your name from the Registrar-Recorder's Voters list and/or the Department of Motor Vehicle's drivers or identification card holder lists. If for some reason your name, address, or date of birth varies in any way (e.g., John Doe vs. John A. Doe) on either list, our computer program does not recognize that the records may be the same person. In such situations you may receive two summonses.

Q: My address is incorrect on the summons. How do I submit a change of address?
A: You may submit a change of address by following the instructions in Section F on your jury summons. You may also correct your address online by going selecting “My Jury Duty Portal” in the left side menu options. Although you may have submitted a change of address to the Juror Services Division, you still must submit a change of address to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and/or the Registrar-Recorder's office. The DMV “Notice of Change of Address” form will change your address on both the DMV and voters list. But if your DMV or voters list name varies in any way (for example: the DMV name is John A. Doe, and the voters list name is John Doe), you must fill out a change of address form for both agencies.

Q: I have recently changed my name. How can I change my jury record name?
A: When you appear for service, you will be required to produce a government issued ID, such as a driver’s license, passport that shows your photo and your correct name and address.

Q: Do I have to register if I am asking to be excused?
A: Yes. If you are requesting to be excused, complete Sections A, B, D, & G of your jury summons. If you are requesting an excuse based on financial hardship, complete Sections A, C, D, G, if you are requesting a medical excuse, complete Section A, B, D, E & G. After filling out the appropriate section to be excused, you must register yourself by calling the 1-800-778-5879 (1-800-SRV-JURY). If you are instructed to mail your summons to Juror Services, please do so in the envelope enclosed with your summons and wait for a response. You may also request an excuse online by selecting “My Jury Duty Portal” in the left hand menu options. Please be patient, your will hear back from us shortly.

Q: I am not sure to whom the summons belongs to in my family as we have the same name.
A: Please call the Juror Services Division at 1-800-778-5879 to verify which member of the family the summons belongs to. You will need to supply us with the age of those with the same name.

Q: Why don’t jurors get paid for their first day of service?
A: Unfortunately, Juror Services has very little control over the fees paid during jury duty. The amount, $15.00 and mileage of $0.34 a mile one-way beginning on the second day of service, is set by statute, Code of Civil Procedure Section 215.

Q: Why am I missing a day of pay on my check?
A: Jury pay, $15.00 per day, begins on the second day of service. Therefore, if you served ten days, you will only get paid for nine. If you feel that you are missing fees for days served, please contact the jury assembly room where you served and verify that you were given attendance for each day you served.

Q: How is mileage calculated/determined?
A: The distance is calculated by a computer program which computes the straight-line distance from your home to the court which has summoned you.

Q: Why are mileage fees only for one-way travel?
A: Unfortunately, Juror Services has very little control over the mileage fees paid during jury duty. This is set by Code of Civil Procedure, Section 215. All of the laws and rules (including mileage fees) governing jury service in California were enacted into law by your California legislators. We encourage you to contact your local legislator.

Q: What should I wear to court?
A: Dress may be business casual and respectful of the court. Do not wear shorts, halter, tank tops, or clothing that exposes your midriff, beachwear, sandals, or clothing with inappropriate graphics or wording.

Q: Is there any special way I must act in court?
A: You should conduct yourself as you would at any serious and important event. You should be courteous at all times. It is important that you remain alert when the court is in session. You may bring a laptop computer, book or magazine to read while you are waiting for court to begin or during recess, but do not read or use your computer while court is in session.

Q: Do the jury assembly rooms have wireless computer access?
A: Yes. All Jury Assembly Rooms throughout Los Angeles County have wireless computer access available to all jurors.

Q: Am I able to bring my laptop when serving and what are the rules regarding use of the Internet?
A: Laptops are allowed in all Jury Assembly Rooms throughout Los Angeles County. The jury assembly rooms have wireless network access available to all jurors. When using your laptop or the computers located in each jury assembly room, please refrain from posting on any social network site, such as Twitter or Facebook, about your jury service experience while serving as a juror. If assigned to a Courtroom, the Judge will give you specific orders regarding Internet use while you are serving. Once you have completed jury service, you are free to post and write about your jury experience.

Q: What happens if I'm late and can't get to the court before the time the trial starts?
A: The trial can't continue. Each juror must hear all the evidence. If you're late, the judge, lawyers, court assistants, witnesses, and your fellow jurors must wait for you. If you don't have a good excuse, the judge may fine you. Although there may be delays caused by any number of reasons it is very important for jurors to be on time. Phone the court at once if you're unavoidably detained.

Q: Is it all right for me to take notes during the trial?
A: You may take notes, but you should not become so involved in note-taking that you miss the nature of the witness' testimony and important points of the testimony.

Q: Is Juror Online Orientation mandatory?
A: No. Online Orientation allows you to take your orientation online in the convenience of your home or office, and allows you to start your service on your reporting day at a later time in the morning. The amount of time you save will depend on the court you have been summoned. If you do not perform orientation online, you will receive your orientation when you appear for service.

Q: How do I perform Juror Orientation online?
A: From the jury website, select the Online Services Link “My Jury Duty Portal”. When the “My Jury Duty Portal” login page appears, type your JID Number, PIN Number and Last Name (as it appears on your summons). Select the “Submit” button to proceed.

The tabs at the top of your “My Jury Duty Portal” main page will guide you through the process. If the “Orientation” tab is not enabled, e.g. grayed out, the option is not available to you because:

  1. You have not completed your “MyInfo” information;
  2. You have not registered for service;
  3. You have received an “Order to Show Cause” notice;
  4. You have requested an excuse, and are still waiting to hear back from the court.
  5. You are too late to perform online orientation. Online orientation must be completed no later than 9:00 p.m. on the Sunday prior to your reporting week. The online orientation takes approximately one hour to complete.
Online Orientation is not available to you during your reporting week. This is because the Court requires significant time in advance to develop daily reports for reporting jurors.

Q: I forgot to perform my online orientation. What should I do?
A: Online orientation is not mandatory. If you have not completed your orientation online, jury orientation will be provided when you appear for service.

Q: My name has changed and is incorrect on my jury summons. How can I change the information on the summons to my correct name?
A: You will not be able to change your name until you appear for service. When you appear for service please bring identification/documentation with your new name.

Q: I am a student studying in another state/county. How can I get excused from jury service?
A: We do not excuse students because they are residing in another state/county. It is our policy to postpone student until one of their school breaks. However, if you can show proof that your permanent residence is outside Los Angeles County by providing us with a copy of one of the following: utility bill, proof of voter’s registration, property tax bill or drives license, we can excuse you from service.

Q: II lost my JID and/or PIN Number. How can I get my juror information?
A: Call 1-800-778-5879 (1-800-SRV-JURY). Agents are available between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. or call (213) 974-5811 between 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. and from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. to obtain that JID and PIN Number.

Q: I made a mistake while registering for jury service. What should I do?
A: You can call 1-800-778-5879 or go to our web portal and select “Chat” to talk to one of our representatives to make any correction.