The Criminal Justice system needs people to be prepared to sit in court and hear evidence at trials. They then have to decide if someone is guilty or innocent. The people who do this are called Jurors and it is called Jury Service.
Each year, the Constable of each parish provides a list of names and addresses of people on the parish capable of serving as jurors.
In order that you are considered for jury service you must;
- Be aged between 25 and 72 years
- have no serious conviction.
People who cannot sit on a Jury include;
People in certain jobs such as doctors, teachers and lawyers. Some people can be exempted from being on a jury because they do not understand English or have physical or mental disabilities.
It is not necessary for Jurors to be paying rates in the Parish
A computer program in the Viscount’s Department is used to draw names at random. An officer from the Viscount’s Department will deliver a notice to the selected people. Sometimes being called for jury service may cause real problems if you are caring for someone and can’t leave them or you can’t afford to take the time off work. In that case you can ask to be let off by contacting the Viscount’s Department, but it is up to you to show why you should be given a certificate of exemption.
When you go to court, some people will be asked to sit as the jury and some will be asked to leave. This is because the lawyer representing the person on trial or the Prosecutor can ask anyone if they have any connection with the case, the person on trial or for that or any reason.
Twelve jurors are chosen and all the others can leave. The Bailiff, Deputy Bailiff or other judge picks someone who is called the Foreman. The Foreman speaks on behalf of the jury.
Lunch is provided for you.
The court sits from 10am to 5pm.
The Court will want you all to agree whether someone is guilty or not guilty. Out of the twelve Jurors, ten must all agree for a decision of guilty. This is called the verdict.
Tel:+44 1534 441408
Will I be paid?
As it is thought that everyone must share this duty, there is no right to be paid. Some Employers do pay their staff when they are called for jury service so check your employment contract or ask your Employer. If you are not going to be paid and this will cause you problems, talk to the Viscounts’ Department straight away.
There is more information about Jury Service here.