How To Get Out of Jury Duty

How Do I Get Out of Jury Duty

How do I get out of jury duty? The best answer to this is to show up and participate. There are only a limited amount of people who end up on a jury. Six people or twelve people make up juries. There might be an alternate juror or two but that should be it.

What if I Accidentally Miss Jury Duty?

If enough jurors show up to jury duty make a panel, the judge may simply ignore any missing jurors. In Texas jurors not present “may be fined not less than $100 nor more than $500.” Either party may request the missing juror to be attached and brought before the court. If the missing juror is brought before the court prior to a jury being impaneled, the juror may be empaneled on the jury. This is after being tried to his or her qualifications.

In a criminal case the attachment of a juror is not mandatory. The defendant must exhaust all preemptory challenges for cause, ask for more, be refused, and point out an objectionable juror who was seated. The judge’s failure to grant an attachment for a missing juror is not reversible error unless the defendant can show injury.

How to Postpone Jury Duty

Jurors who have excuses to not be on jury duty will be heard by the judge usually one by one in front of the bench. At this time exemptions and lack of qualifications are heard. If the jurors excuse is sufficient the judge will discharge or postpone the juror’s service to future date set by the court.

The court may discharge a juror or postpone the juror’s service for a juror’s religious beliefs or the juror’s religious holiday. The juror must provide an affidavit the complies with Article 29.012(c). This article requires an affidavit to state (1) the grounds for the recess or exclusion from jury duty. And (2) that the juror holds religious beliefs that prohibit him from taking part in court proceedings on the day for which the recess or exclusion is sought. This affidavit is proof of the facts stated and need not be corroborated.

Jury Service Exemption

A juror with an exemption will not need to show up if they sign a statement of ground of exemption. This must be done with the court clerk at any time before the date he or she is summoned to appear.

Juror Excused by Consent

If both parties of the trial consent, the summoned juror may be excused by the court at anytime prior to the juror being impaneled.


If a juror makes it past the excuses, exemptions, and strikes the juror may end up on the jury. The panel gets selected as jurors in numerical order from each person who is still eligible to serve on the jury. Once all of the six or twelve seats have been filled the rest of the panel gets sent home.

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Author: Eric Torberson

Eric Torberson is a licensed attorney in Texas as well as licensed in the federal courts of the southern and western districts of Texas.