Being a jury is a very low paid job. Most people are busy. Many cannot leave their bizs.

So, I would expect many people do not want to be a jury.

Can I pretend that I am a libertarian that knows jury nullification? Can I say I am crazy and racist and not objective?

What can I legally and safely do to avoid jury duty?

Or may be I can learn a lot of laws and hence I can say I know jury nullification. What was the case again? Tax evation? Well, taxation is theft. I won't convict no matter what. Hurray....

And I'll be disqualified, which is what I want.

That sort of thing....

I think "pretending" is a bad idea.

But what about learning laws for example. It's legal to learn laws. And lawyers don't get selected as jury. Of course, that's a hard way. What's the easier way?

  • In.what jurisdiction?
    – phoog
    Commented Jan 27, 2020 at 13:32

4 Answers 4


Legally and safely? Have a good and true reason for being excused, and hope the judge accepts it. If being on a jury would somehow cause you legitimate hardship, you may be excused. If you're a felon, and haven't had your rights restored, many courts won't even let you sit on a jury.

Don't "pretend" anything, though. If you intentionally deceive the court in order to avoid jury duty -- or, where it's possible, even to get onto a particular jury -- that is illegal in probably every court that has a concept of jury duty.


There is a distinction between "actually serving" versus "getting called to answer the questions". If you ignore the summons, you may be jailed and fined. You, and thousands more like you, can protest "I can't take time off work", but the odds that such a plea will matter to the court is very low: you have a duty to serve on a jury, if called. The claim "my boss won't let me off" is ineffective, even if it is true, because the boss cannot fire you for complying with this legal obligation. However, if being forced to serious would cause a significant hardship (making you homeless, missing the birth of your child), your obligation might be delayed. An argument that jury financial hardship would result may persuade the judge. Jury pay may be low enough that it just barely covers your transportation costs.

During the process of selecting jurors for a case, each prospective juror is asked questions which can lead to them being excused, or not. If you're excused from one case, you may still be kept in the prospective pool for another case; eventually, you go home for the day, and come back the next day. You do have a legal obligation to be truthful w.r.t. the questions that you are asked, and if you lie, you can be charged with perjury. Pretending to be unable to follow the judges instructions is a lie (that is implicit in the word "pretending"), and you probably can't afford the prison time for perjury.

  • If you are excused for jury duty, then it may be years and years before you get elected to be jury again? Right?
    – user4951
    Commented Mar 24, 2018 at 17:27
  • Will KKK members be allowed on jury duty? May be not?
    – user4951
    Commented Mar 24, 2018 at 17:27
  • 1
    It may be decades before you are called again; there is no ideological bar to jury service.
    – user6726
    Commented Mar 24, 2018 at 17:38
  • 1
    "An argument that jury financial hardship would result may persuade the judge. Jury pay may be low enough that it just barely covers your transportation costs." And the judge will smile and order the sheriff to send a deputy to transport you to and from your home and the courthouse each day. :) I've been sent myself on several occasions to "retrieve" a juror who claimed he had no way to get to the courthouse.
    – Officer
    Commented Jan 27, 2020 at 5:03

In the U.S., dismissals are for anything that would prejudice you against either party and "time considerations will do just that" (if you're concerned about missing work, it's a good reason to get off, though salary work is not likely to have such a concern as your payed yearly regardless of time worked... most salary positions in the U.S. will recognize "jury duty" as valid leave).

You don't have to pretend to be a libertarian to know about "Jury Nullification" as it's hardly a Libertarian view, though U.S. Libertarians tend to discuss it as they are minarchists and believe the government has been overextended glut (though not out and out uneeded like there European cousins who tend to be anarchists... and not in a legal system that uses juries).

When a prospective jury do not lie while being voir dired (the term for the jury selection questioning), the jurist is under oath, which means that any lie you tell opens you up to perjury charges. As much as you don't want a seat in the jury box, you really don't want to be sitting at the defense table.

Most lawyers will dismiss anyone who shows signs of knowing anything about the case or the law (or thinks they know about those). Unless it's a high profile case, you're likely not going to have any knowledge about the defendant or the crimes or even if it's criminal in nature (U.S. uses Jury trial for civil cases as well). And remember a "Jury of the defendant's peers) are your peers as well... you don't want to call yourself a bigot of any strike in a public record only to have another potential juror come into your work, see you, and ask for your manager because the juror doesn't like bigots and won't do buisness with someone who says under oath they are nor there employers (yes, Karen can get summoned for Jury duty).

Edit: Fun Fact, in the U.S. you can't really serve on a jury if it's a capital punishment case and you are opposed to capital punishment. In a few, the jury will actually be relevant in the sentencing phase.


In Ireland, you can be excused if you have a holiday already booked for the time of the trial. So the moment you get the summons book a holiday for the following days. You should bring the tickets with you to court on the day of selection.

  • Booking a holiday after the summons is received will at best postpone the duty, and the question is particularly in the context of people who can't afford to be paid less than their wage, let alone take time off.
    – user4657
    Commented Jan 27, 2020 at 9:42

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