Frequently Asked Questions
A local Jury Board randomly draws names from State of Michigan driver license and personal identification card holder lists as required by Michigan law.
Yes. The United States Constitution guarantees the right to a trial by jury in both criminal and civil cases.
Jury service is a civic duty that every eligible adult has. If you have a genuine scheduling conflict, such as a planned vacation, you have the ability to postpone jury service to a more convenient time. Please forward a written request to the County Clerk’s Office with an explanation. Your request will be reviewed and you will be notified of whether you are excused for that particular trial and, if so, of the rescheduled trial date.
You may have been called for more than one trial if the first trial cancelled and you did not actually appear in court for jury selection. Contact the County Clerk’s Office at 225-8330 and they will check the status of your service record.
Both circuit courtrooms have the capability to assist individuals who have hearing impairments or need special seating arrangements. A handicap accessible ramp is located between the courthouse buildings on the second floor of the Courthouse Annex with parking on both Baraga and Spring Streets. Please contact the Circuit Court Bailiff at 225-8209 to let them know what type of assistance you will need.
When you receive your jury summons, a red parking permit will be included. Place this in your windshield at any metered or 2-hour parking area around the Courthouse complex or in any County lot. A map will also be enclosed.
There are two types of trials that have juries: criminal trials and civil trials. Divorce trials do not have juries. The judge knows about how long the trial is expected to take and he will advise you of that time frame when your group is called for jury selection. The actual length of a trial depends on the complexity of the issue(s) and how long jurors spend in deliberations.
The judge and court staff work hard to reduce the time you spend waiting as a juror; however, waiting time cannot be completely eliminated. The law is complex and many steps have to happen before, during, and after the trial. Try to be patient and come prepared with reading material or handicrafts such as knitting or crocheting to occupy your time while waiting. Court staff will explain delays when possible.
MCL 600.1346 makes refusal to serve punishable as contempt of court. You may be summoned to appear at a hearing and sentenced to contempt of court.
No formal dress code exists; however, jurors are requested to dress in a manner respectful to the Court. Jurors are requested not to wear such clothing items as hats, tank tops, cutoffs or clothing with provocative messages that some individuals may consider offensive.
Weapons are not permitted in the courthouse. Cell phones and pagers are required to be turned off when in the courtroom. Only water in a clear plastic bottle is permitted in the courtroom; no other food or drink is allowed. Cameras, computers, video equipment and other electronic equipment is not allowed in the courtroom.
Smoking is prohibited in the courthouse; however, there are designated areas for smoking and you will be accompanied by court staff during breaks to the nearest designated smoking area.
Marquette County Administration will announce closure of the courthouse due to severe weather conditions on local radio and TV stations.
Once the verdict is read in court, the jury returns to the jury room. Often the judge will stop in to talk with the jurors to answer any questions and get feedback about the trial. Some jurors find it helpful, but you are free to leave once you return to the jury room. You will receive a check for your jury service in the mail approximately 2-3 weeks following your service
A message may be left in the Bailiff's Office at 225-8209, leaving the name of the juror, your name and telephone number for a return phone call. This line will be checked frequently for messages during trials and jurors will be provided an opportunity to return the call at the next recess.