If you are selected to sit on a jury, the average trial length is two to three days, although trials may be longer or shorter depending upon the facts of the case. If you are not chosen to serve on a trial your jury service is complete for three years.
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Annually a master juror list is created. Your name can come from various approved public lists such as licensed drivers lists, voter rolls, tax records and/or other public records that are inclusive of all citizens, old and young, rich and poor.
An orientation will be provided advising you of the jury selection procedure. You may also view the orientation video. If you go into a courtroom for jury selection you will be told about the length of the trial. Any conflicts that you may have will be addressed during the jury selection.
The United States Constitution and the Pennsylvania State Constitution guarantee the right to a trial by jury. Failure to attend as directed may subject you to penalties provided by law. All Bucks County residents are obligated by state law to serve as a juror unless they:
The normal working hours for the court are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. If you are seated on a trial you may serve later than 4:30 pm.
Jurors should dress comfortably, but properly for a courthouse. Business casual attire is appropriate. No shorts or tee shirts are permitted. Those who arrive inappropriately dressed will be required to return on a later occasion.
The jury process can require a juror to wait a considerable amount of time. For this reason, jurors are encouraged to bring a book or other form of reading material. Laptop computers may also be used (wireless is available). Cell phones must be turned off in the courtroom. Please note all visitors to the courthouse are screened for security purposes. Any articles which are deemed to be capable of being used as weapons will be confiscated, as will any other illegal items. This includes all e-cigarettes and vape pens.
A jury summons is a court order. Any juror who fails to appear when summoned may be fined and/or imprisoned for contempt of court. It is in your best interest to appear if you are summoned to avoid any future action.
Pennsylvania law does not exclude persons due to their age. However, if you are 70 years of age or older you may be excused without a doctor’s note.
The Jury Selection Commission realizes prospective jurors may have been summoned at an inconvenient time and is willing to defer service to a more convenient time in most instances. Jurors may request a first-time postponement in writing. Jurors may select a new date of their choice, with limitations. Subsequent postponements are not allowed unless it is an extreme emergency that was not anticipated when the first postponement was granted.
If you wish to be excused for the calendar year a note from your physician is required. A doctor’s note may be mailed or faxed to 215-340-8836. A note from the doctor’s office must include your name and juror number. If you have a mental or physical infirmity in which you will be able to serve at a later date in the year verification from your doctor is not required.
If you are a person with a disability and require reasonable accommodations please contact the ADA Coordinator at 215-348-6775, no later than 7 days prior to your report date.
A service animal (dog) may accompany you to jury duty if that service animal is trained for a specific task due to your disability. Emotional support animals are not permitted.
You will receive a notice in the mail stating your reporting status 4 weeks before your actual service date.
Pennsylvania law does not require an employer to compensate an employee for jury service. Check with your company’s human resources department for their policy.
No. Pennsylvania law prohibits an employer from terminating or otherwise penalizing an employee because the employee serves as a juror.
Pennsylvania law does not provide for an excuse from jury service for moral or religious beliefs. You are still required to appear for jury service when you get to a court room, the judge will make that decision.
Bucks County tries civil and criminal cases, both of which require jury trials. The random selection process prevents you from knowing in advance what type of trial for which you’ll be selected. The jury staff cannot excuse you as a potential juror because of what you do for a living.
The regular juror’s summons has a service date in which you must appear. A standby juror has a service week in which you have to call for five business days beginning the Friday before your service week to see if you are needed. If you have rescheduled your jury service you must report on the new assigned date. You will not call in; it does not matter what your status was previously.
If you have any questions regarding this please call the Jury Office at 215-348-6702.
Free parking is available in the Bucks County Parking Garage located on Broad and Union streets. It is a 4 tier garage with entrances on Doyle, Broad and Union streets.
The County runs a shuttle bus from the garage to the Justice Center between the hours of 7 to 10 am. and 3:30 to 5:30 pm. The shuttle bus stop is on Union Street, the top level of the garage. If you require handicap parking there are spots available in the parking garage on every level near the elevators. If you need further information regarding parking please call 215-348-6711.
Parking at a meter or other lot is not advised it may result in a parking ticket or your vehicle may be towed. Information regarding the parking garage may also be found in the link at the top of this page Jury information and overview. The short video will answer many of your questions regarding parking.
Call the Jury office at 215-348-6711 between 8 am and 4:30 pm. We are often checking in jurors or away from our desks, if we do not answer please leave a message we will return your call at our earliest convenience.
If there is inclement weather you may call the weather hotline at 215-340-8208 after 6: 30 am. If the court cancels or delays the reporting time for that day, the recorded message will indicate the updated status. You may also check weather updates on Facebook or Twitter. If the message has not changed, then your status remains the same.
Contact the following resources:
If you have appeared for jury service within the last 3 years answer questions 8 and 9 on your juror questionnaire. If you wish to be excused proof of service is required from the court that you appeared for jury service. If you appeared in Bucks County, The Office of jury Selection can obtain your date of service.
For your convenience, we have provided a list of phone numbers to local Pennsylvania Courts you can call to request proof of service.