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Jurors -- Frequently Asked Questions
|500 South Denver, Tulsa OK 74103 | Phone: (918) 596-5000
Who may be called to serve as a juror?
You may be called to serve if you are 18 years old, a U.S. citizen and a resident of the county or district where
summoned. You must be physically and mentally capable of serving. In addition, you must not have been
convicted of a felony.
How did my name get selected for jury duty?
The objective of the court is to provide an accurate cross-section of the county's population. The names of jurors
are selected at random from everyone who is a registered has a driver's license or identification card issued by
the Department of Public Safety.
When I am summoned as a juror, where should I go?
Read the summons carefully. The summons you received in the mail includes the reporting address, as well as
date and procedure your should follow to arrive at the correct time when you report for jury duty.
May I reschedule my jury service to a more convenient time?
If you have not already rescheduled your jury service, you may request that your service be rescheduled to a
more convenient time by calling the Jury Clerk at (918) 596-5529. You can also mail in your summons with your
request written on the back in the area provided. You will receive a written response from the Jury Clerk within
two weeks. Our mailing address is Tulsa County Courthouse, 500 S. Denver, Room 637, Tulsa, OK 74103. You
may reschedule your jury service to a date six months after your summons date.
How can I be a juror if my boss won't let me take time off?
Title 38 Section 34 of the Oklahoma Statutes reads: Any person who is summoned to serve as a juror and who
notifies his or her employer of such summons within a reasonable period of time after receipt of a summons and
prior to his or her appearance for jury duty may not be terminated, removed or otherwise subject to any adverse
employment action as a result of such service.
What should I wear to court?
Dress as you would to go to a business meeting. Do not wear shorts or tank tops. Check with the Jury Clerk if
you have any doubts.
Is there any special way I must act in court?
Be alert and courteous. You may bring a book or newspaper to read while you're waiting for court to begin, or
during recesses, but not while court is in session. While in a courtroom all cell phones and pagers must be
turned off. Also, the Jury Assembly Room is now equipped with WIFI/wireless Internet access.
What happens if I'm late?
Contact the Jury Clerk as soon as you know you are going to be late. If you are already assigned to a courtroom,
contact the Judge's bailiff in order to explain your situation. Remember: The trial cannot proceed until everyone
is present. If you don't have a good excuse, the judge may fine you for being late!
May I take notes during the trial?
The practice varies from courtroom to courtroom, but usually note taking is allowed.
May I be excused from jury service?
You may request to be excused by contacting the Jury Clerk as indicated above. If your excuse is not allowed,
you must report for duty as scheduled. You will have an opportunity on the day you report to speak to a Judge
about your situation. You should be aware, there are very limited reasons for which you can be completely
excused from jury duty. It is not sufficient that you are self-employed or are a stay-at-home parent.
If your reason is medical in nature, you should be prepared to submit a statement from your health care provider
that your condition makes it impossible for you to serve jury duty.
May jurors ask questions during the trial?
If you have a question, write it down on a piece of paper. Motion for the bailiff, who will hand your question to
the judge. The judge will respond by writing a note back, by answering directly from the bench, or may indicate
that trial procedures do not allow that question to be answered at that time.
Is it true that I must not discuss the case with anyone while the trial is in progress?
Do not talk to anyone about the case until you are discharged from the jury. Not even the lawyers or the judge,
except through the bailiff. Discussions with others can cause a mistrial because the juror gained evidence
outside the record or was influenced. If any person persists in talking to you about the trial or attempts to
influence your judgment as a juror, tell the bailiff. During deliberations at the end of the trial, you will naturally
discuss the case with other jurors in order to reach a verdict.
May I investigate some parts of the case that aren't presented by the attorneys - on my
No. Under no circumstances should you investigate the case on your own, either alone or with other jurors. You
may not talk to witnesses, visit locations, or do independent experiments. You must not conduct any research
of any kind on your own. This includes any Internet searches and posting anything on social networking sites
such as FaceBook and Twitter. Your verdict must be based only on evidence produced in court. This rule ensures
a fair trial based on evidence that all sides have seen and can challenge. If you violate this rule, you could
cause a mistrial.
Why do attorneys talk with the judge out of the jurors' hearing?
Such conferences are held to discuss legal issues, or to agree upon what evidence may be submitted for you to
consider. These conferences often help expedite the trial or to avoid the possibility of a mistrial.
Why am I always being summoned and others are not?
The selection and management of jurors is governed by state law. By law, potential jurors are selected
RANDOMLY from the Department of Public Safety's drivers and identification card holders. Since the lists
generated are completely random it is possible for you to be summoned more often than others. However, you
are only required to serve once every two years. If you receive a summons within the two year period, contact
the Jury Clerk to have it verified so you can be excused.
Can I send my spouse or someone else in my place?
You may not substitute someone else in your place for jury duty. The selection process is done randomly and
must stay that way. You and the person you send could both be held in contempt of court for this action.
|What if I forgot about jury duty or just don't show up?
If you honestly forgot, you should contact the Jury Clerk as soon as possible to reschedule your jury service. A
juror who is summoned and who willfully and without reasonable excuse fails to appear for jury service may be
found by the court to be in contempt and is subject to penalties provided by law. If you failed to appear on the
date summoned, write to the Jury Clerk explaining the situation and include your Jury ID number. The address is
500 S. Denver, Room 637, Tulsa, OK 74103. You should receive a response within two weeks of receipt.
SCAM ALERT--- No one from the Court or the Tulsa County Sheriff's Office will contact you by telephone
demanding you pay money to them for your failure to appear. If you receive such a call, you should report
it to the Sheriff's Office.