While understanding jury duty is not convenient and can cause hardships, it is still the duty and responsibility of every citizen of this country to serve when called. Failure to appear for jury service when summoned is a serious matter. If you do not complete the questionnaire online, do not appear for Jury Qualification or your scheduled jury service, your appearance before a court will be mandatory. You will be required to show cause for your failure to appear and/or be held in contempt of court.
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If you are a United States Citizen, a resident of Shelby County and at least 18 years of age, you are eligible to be summoned for jury duty. The United States Constitution guarantee all individuals, regardless of race, creed, religion, sex, national origin or economic status the right to trial by jury of one’s peers. In order to uphold this guarantee, we need those summoned to participate in the jury process to ensure every citizen’s right to have his/her case decided by a fair and impartial jury selected from a pool of prospective jurors.
A master list of prospective jurors for the County of Shelby is compiled from the Tennessee Department of Safety. The list includes all citizens over the age of 18, who have either a driver’s license or a state ID. Your name is electronically and randomly selected from the list of names collected from the master list.
Yes. There is no longer an age exemption for individuals 70 years old or older. If you have a medical issue that you feel will create a hardship if required to serve, you may submit or have your physician submit documentation regarding his/her concerns. After documentation is submitted, if you do not receive a response by mail, text or email confirming dismissal, it is your responsibility to contact the Jury Commission for further instructions or you may appear to speak with a judge at Jury Qualification.
You will choose a period of one (1) week to serve, usually beginning on a Monday. This is a one week or one trial jury system. Once seated on a jury trial, your appearance will be required until the completion of the trial. Most cases are only 2 to 5 days in length. Rarely do we have trials which exceed 5 days. If not called to a jury trial by Wednesday of each week, over 85% of the jury pool is dismissed.
A juror is only required to serve once every ten years. If you are summoned before your ten years are up, simply call the Jury Commission to speak with a representative to verify your previous jury service. This does not include serving Federal jury duty.
To qualify for jury service, a person must:
Only individuals who are legally exempt or disqualified can be excused from jury service, they include:
All individuals claiming a legal exemption or disqualification must submit appropriate documentation prior to the Jury Qualification date listed on the summons. After submitting your documentation, if you do not receive a response by mail, text or email confirming dismissal, it is your responsibility to contact the Jury Commission for confirmation or for further instructions. If you do not submit documentation or have not been excused, you MUST APPEAR before a judge at Jury Qualification.
If you are not a resident of Shelby County, you are not eligible to serve as a juror. You must submit one or more of the following to verify your current residence, prior to the appearance date on your summons:
After successfully completing the questionnaire, you should be prompted to choose a future week to serve jury duty. Once your week is selected, your qualification process is complete. You will not be required to appear for Jury Qualification on the date noted on your original jury summons. You will only be required to report for jury service on the date you have chosen.
If you completed the on-line questionnaire and chose a week to report, you are not required to appear for Jury Qualification. You only need to appear for your jury duty service on the date you chose on-line.
On the date you are scheduled to serve jury duty, you must report to the Shelby County Office Building at 157 Poplar Avenue, in the Jury Assembly Room #134.
There are no designated parking areas for jurors. The following parking lots and garages are available at discounted rates:
Please pay attention to all signs & be sure to insert or pay the attendant the correct amount to cover your parking time. The Jury Commission is not responsible for any tickets, tows and tire boots.
The jury commission does not reimburse for parking, nor are we responsible for any tickets, tows or tire boots. To avoid any issues, we recommend you park at the discounted locations listed above.
Jurors are expected to dress in a manner that is respectful to the courts. You are encouraged to dress very comfortable. Business attire is not a requirement. Jeans, slacks, T-shirts and sweats are permitted. All pants must go below your ankles. The following items of clothing should NOT be worn:
There are times jurors are required to have long waiting periods while judges and parties related to a case are negotiating. We try to keep waiting times to a minimum, however, some circumstances are beyond the Court’s control. We recommend bringing reading material, crossword puzzles, knitting, lap tops or tablets, etc., to occupy your time while waiting in the Jury Assembly Room.
Jurors should prepare to be available for at least 8 hours each day. You should have child care, pet care, transportation, work schedules and other obligations in order prior to your appearance for jury service. You will not be excused or rescheduled for any of these reasons.
You may bring cell phones. They must be silenced during orientation and turned off prior to entering a courtroom. Should a family member have an emergency and need to contact you, please inform them to call the Jury Commission at 901-222-1650. We will get the message to you as soon as possible, even if in a courtroom.
Jurors are allowed to bring electronics such as lap tops, tablets, phone chargers and ipods. To the discretion of the security personnel, some electronics are subject to additional search.
Yes. Wi-Fi is available in the jury assembly room. The instructions to access connection will be given during orientation on your first day of service. Wi-Fi is not available in the courthouses.
According to the pay law, jurors are paid $11 for each day of jury service. Jurors who have been sworn by a Judge to serve on a sequestered trial will be paid $30 for each day of service, until the completion of the trial. Checks are mailed to the address on file 10-15 working days after Friday of each week.
If you are a full-time or part-time employee, your employer is required by Tennessee Code Annotated-Title 22 to pay your normal salary. (Please note: Your employer is not required to pay commission or overtime, even if you normally work overtime. If you need further information, you may call the Jury Commission to speak with a Coordinator.
You must notify your employer when you are scheduled to appear for jury service. An employer cannot terminate an employee for serving jury duty. An employer who penalizes, terminates or makes threats of termination is subject to contempt of court.
If you have an emergency arises or if you have questions regarding your jury service, you can call the Jury Commission at 901-222-1650, between the hours of 8am and 4:30pm. A representative is available to assist during regular business hours. Jurors should not use email to contact the Jury Commission in the event of an emergency.
Children are not allowed to come to jury duty. Please make arrangements for childcare, pick-up and drop-off, after school care, etc., prior to your jury service. Shelby County Government does not provide childcare of any kind while serving jury duty.
In the event of schools in Shelby County closing because of inclement weather, you are not required to report at your scheduled time. If you do not receive a text message or email from the Jury Commission, you must call 901-222-1650 before 10am, for further instructions. If you are serving on a trial, you will get instructions from the judge. You may also listen for court cancellations on your local news stations.
After receiving your summons in the mail, if you have access to a computer you can complete the questionnaire online. If you feel you are disqualified or should be excused from serving jury duty, you must submit documentation supporting your request to be excused or disqualified, prior to the Jury Qualification date listed on the summons. If you do don’t receive a response by mail, text or email confirming dismissal, it is your responsibility to contact the Jury Commission for confirmation or for further instructions, otherwise you will be required to appear for Jury Qualification as stated on your summons.
If you don’t have access to a computer, you must appear before a judge to present proper documentation and discuss reasons for dismissal.
You may complete the qualification process online to avoid appearing for your scheduled Jury Qualification. If you don’t have access to a computer and cannot appear for Jury Qualification, you must call the Jury Commission for further instructions.
THE DATE YOU CHOOSE IS THE DATE YOU MUST SERVE. You will not be excused or rescheduled due to any reason other than a medical emergency or the death of a family member. You can call the Jury Commission to speak with a Coordinator in the event of this type of emergency..
Being declared disabled is not an exemption. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, Shelby County Government is required to provide reasonable accommodations to all citizens call to serve jury duty. Any persons needing a special accommodation should contact the Jury Commission prior to Jury Qualification. If your physician feels you should not serve because of a medical condition, he/she should provide a letter to the courts prior to your scheduled Jury Qualification. If you do don’t receive a response by mail, text or email confirming dismissal, it is your responsibility to contact the Jury Commission for further instructions.
This is not an exemption or disqualification. You do not need to speak perfect English to serve as a juror. The courts use common, everyday language that can be understood and at times, will provide an interpreter if required to serve on a trial. If you can not understand English at all, you will need to appear before a judge at your scheduled Jury Qualification. You may bring a friend or family member who speaks English, to assist with your request.
No. The staff of the Jury Commission or the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office will never call to ask for personal information such as social security, credit card or bank account numbers. Do not provide this type of information to anyone claiming to be associated with the Courts of Shelby County. Should you receive a call, contact the Memphis Police Department’s Fraud Unit at 901-222-5600. You may also call the Jury Commission for further information.
There are private areas at the Jury Commission and areas available upon request in the courthouse. Speak with the staff upon your arrival for assistance with this matter.
You must appear for Jury Qualification to discuss any hardships that you feel jury duty may create if required to serve. The judge will give you an opportunity to discuss your personal hardships and present any supporting documentation to show as verification.
When you have completed your jury service, you can log on to the website ejuror.shelbycountytn.gov to print verification of each day you've served. You may also come to the Jury Commission to get a letter or call 901-222-1650, to have it mailed or faxed to you.
No. If you legally reside in Shelby County, you are required to fulfill your jury duty obligations in Shelby County. If you own property, are registered to vote, have driver's license or state ID or have vehicles registered in Shelby County, you are required to serve.