Is It Possible To Get Out of Jury Duty?

Jury duty is a fundamental aspect of the judicial system, ensuring peers from the community have a say in upholding justice. Serving on a jury isn’t only your civic duty but also an opportunity to participate actively within this pillar of democracy.

However, while it’s essential and often mandatory, there are legitimate reasons that could lead you to seek an exemption from jury service. It’s important to understand how people are chosen for jury duty and how you can reschedule or get out of serving on a jury. 

How People Are Chosen for Jury Duty

Selection for jury duty largely depends on specific eligibility requirements. In Louisiana, you must be a U.S. citizen and 18 years of age or older in order to serve as a juror. Additionally, past convictions can affect your eligibility for jury service, with certain criminal records potentially leading to disqualification.

Jury duty could appear to sneak up on you when least expected due to its random nature of selection. Courts recruit potential jurors from a large pool – which includes voter registrations, driver records, or other public sources – via a randomized process.

Some people may experience long durations between summons or never receive one, while others face repeated calls for duty within short timeframes. This randomness means you might be summoned for jury duty – for example, for a car accident case – during inconvenient times in your life.

If you’re called for jury duty in Louisiana, the circumstances of your life might not lend themselves to fulfilling this commitment. Understanding the most common ways jury duty is avoided is crucial. 

Claim Undue Hardship

Louisiana law recognizes that certain physical or mental conditions may inhibit a person’s ability to serve on a jury effectively. To advocate for an undue hardship exemption, being prepared with valid medical documentation supporting such claims is vital. 

Claiming Extreme Inconvenience

Sometimes, serving on a jury could disrupt your daily life significantly. This might take the form of excessive financial tolls due to missing work or major personal upheavals such as sole caregiver responsibilities. 

Louisiana courts are more inclined to accept requests for excusal if it’s demonstrated clearly that serving will impose considerable hardships. This typically surpasses typical day-to-day inconveniences of missing out on work.

When requesting to be excused from jury duty based on undue or extreme physical or financial hardship, bringing evidence that supports your claim is necessary. 

You may be required to show income tax returns demonstrating a clear financial strain should you miss work for jury service, medical statements, and notes attesting to dependencies requiring your constant care.  

Ask To Be Excused for Medical Reasons

Should a medical condition inhibit your capacity to serve on a jury, submit an exemption request accompanied by documentation from your healthcare provider. 

The doctor’s note should clearly outline the nature of your health condition and its impact on fulfilling duties as a juror. Upon receipt, court officials will scrutinize the evidence provided before arriving at their final decision about excusing you due to medical reasons.

Exemptions from Jury Duty

Louisiana acknowledges certain circumstances that could exempt a person from jury duty. For example, if you’ve served on jury duty within the last two years or if you’re 70 or older, then you’re eligible for an exemption. However, these exemptions won’t apply by default. Each time you’re summoned for jury service, it is necessary to claim your above-mentioned exemption.

Defer Jury Duty to a Later Date

In cases where you’re eligible for jury duty but face scheduling conflicts, it might be possible to postpone your service. Complete the deferral form detailing valid reasons for delay, such as pre-booked holidays or unavoidable business travel, clearly mentioning conflicting dates. Requests like these are typically granted, although courts aren’t obligated and may only approve this deferment once.
While jury duty is an integral part of our judicial system in civil injury and wrongful death cases as well as criminal cases, it’s important to remember that there are legitimate ways to excuse yourself if circumstances affect your ability to serve. Understanding this process can help alleviate the stress and apprehension attached to receiving a jury summons in Louisiana.

Contact Our Personal Injury Law Firm in Baton Rouge, LA

If you’ve been injured in an accident in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and need legal help, contact our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers at Palmintier Law Group to schedule a free consultation today.

Palmintier Law Group
618 Main St, Baton Rouge, LA 70801, United States
(225) 344 3735