Harford County, Maryland
 
Harford County Maryland

LOCATED AT:
Harford County
Jury Commissioner
20 West Courtland Street
Bel Air, Maryland 21014

EMAIL ADDRESS :
OFFICE PHONE:
410.638.3251 or
410.838.3172 or
410.879.2000 Ext.3251
JUROR INSTRUCTIONS:
410.838.3172
After 5pm Prior to Reporting Date
Jury Commissioner
Jury Instructions Where to Report Qualification Form Downloadable Documents Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How was I chosen for jury duty?
  • How long is my jury term?
  • Will jury service place my job or pay in jeopardy?
  • What happens if I don’t report to jury duty or I fail to respond to the Court’s questionnaire?
  • What happens when I call the recording for final reporting instructions?
  • What is the dress code for jury duty?
  • Where do I park?
  • Where do I report?
  • Can I bring my cell phone/electronic device into the courthouse?
  • What can I bring with me?
  • Can I be excused for a work or financial hardship?
  • What if I need to postpone/reschedule my date for jury duty?
  • What if I need to be excused for medical reasons?
  • What if I am not a United States citizen?
  • What if I am no longer a resident of Harford County?
  • What if I am Active Duty Military, etc.?
  • What if I am a full-time student?
  • What if I have charges pending?
  • What if I have been convicted of a crime?
  • What if I received a summons, but I recently served jury duty?
  • What if I am a nursing mother?
  • What is the difference between a Trial (Petit) Jury and a Grand Jury?
  • What if I still have questions?
  • HOW WAS I CHOSEN FOR JURY DUTY?

    Maryland's jury selection law provides that jurors are selected at random from a fair cross section of citizens residing in the county where the Court convenes. Under this law, your name has been selected from a consolidated list of registered voters from the Board of Elections AND licensed drivers or identification card holders from the Motor Vehicle Administration from Harford County.

    HOW LONG IS MY JURY TERM?

    The term of service for trial/petit jurors is one day or one trial. Plan to be available all day. The average length of a jury trial is 2 to 3 days; however some trials may last longer. You will be informed of the expected length of trial in the courtroom during the selection process. The term of service for grand jurors is four months; however the grand jury reports generally two days per month.

    WILL JURY SERVICE PLACE MY JOB OR PAY IN JEOPARDY?

    Jury duty is a civic obligation. As stated by Maryland law, an employer may not deprive an employee of his/her employment solely because of job time lost by the employee as a result of responding to a jury summons or as a result of attending court for service or prospective service as a trial or grand juror. Employers are not obligated to pay employees their wage/salary while serving jury duty. Payment (from employers) for employees attending jury duty is at the discretion of the employer. As a juror, you are paid $20.00 cash from the Court, as expense money, for each day of service. You will receive a work certificate as jury attendance verification for your employer.

    WHAT HAPPENS IF I DON’T REPORT TO JURY DUTY OR I FAIL TO RESPOND TO THE COURT’S QUESTIONNAIRE?

    Failure to appear for jury duty or to return your completed qualification form is a serious matter and is punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment. You will be issued an order to report and you will be required to “Show Cause” as to why you did not respond to the summons/report for jury duty. 

    WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I CALL THE RECORDING FOR FINAL REPORTING INSTRUCTIONS?

    Please listen for instructions for your reporting number, which can be found on your juror badge. You do not report for jury duty unless the recording/website instructs you to do so.

    WHAT IS THE DRESS CODE FOR JURY DUTY?

    Out of respect for the Court; please dress appropriately. Proper attire is required. No uniforms and no offensive or revealing clothing.

    WHERE DO I PARK?

    Juror parking is provided (free of charge) on the roof top level of the parking garage located on the corner of Courtland Street and Hickory Avenue. As a parking permit, you will need to place the parking permit, which is provided on the bottom portion of your summons, on your dashboard, visible through the windshield. If you have lost your summons/parking permit, you may visit the downloads section of our website to obtain a parking permit or you will need to write a note stating "On Jury Duty" and your report date to display on your dashboard. If you require handicap or oversized vehicle parking, please contact the Jury Office by email or phone for additional information.

    WHERE DO I REPORT?

    You report to the Harford County Circuit Court building on the corner of Main and Courtland Streets.  The address is 20 W. Courtland Street Bel Air, MD 21014.  The Jury Assembly Room is on the 3rd floor, Room #3-03.  Please report promptly at the time indicated on your summons.  There are occasions when a larger group is reporting and you may be asked to report to the ceremonial courtroom on the 2nd floor, Courtroom #2-50.  Final reporting instructions will be detailed for you on the recording/website after 5:00 p.m. on the evening before your report date.

    CAN I BRING MY CELL PHONE/ELECTRONIC DEVICE INTO THE COURTHOUSE?

    Cell phones and other electronic devices (such as laptops, tablets, etc.) are allowed into the courthouse; however use of such devices will be limited to the Jury Assembly Room. Devices must be turned off while inside a courtroom and are NOT permitted inside the jury deliberation rooms. Devices are not permitted to take or record photographs, video or other audio/visual images in a court facility. Any persons found in violation of electronic device restrictions shall be subject to confiscation of the device, a fine, or incarceration at the discretion of the presiding Judge of this Court.

    WHAT CAN I BRING WITH ME?

    No weapons, knives or sharp objects of any kind are permitted. No provisions are available for childcare.

    You may bring food/drinks, which are allowed in the Jury Assembly Room; however they are not permitted in the courtroom. You will receive a lunch break and other breaks throughout the day. There are many restaurants/delis within walking distance of the courthouse and vending machines are available on Level A of the courthouse.

    You may bring reading material.

    CAN I BE EXCUSED FOR A WORK OR FINANCIAL HARDSHIP?

    Please be advised that excusal requests are granted rarely and only for undue hardships or extreme circumstances, as determined by the Court. Maryland law does not allow exemption based on occupation. There are many people with work and financial hardship situations; therefore not everyone can be granted an excusal. You may submit a written request to be considered a work or financial hardship/excuse if possible. If your request can be granted, you will receive a call/email on the afternoon before your scheduled report date. If you do not receive a call/email notifying you of an excusal, you will be required to follow the call in procedure for final reporting instructions. If you instructed to report, you will be given the opportunity to tell the Judge about your hardship of serving more than one day.

    WHAT IF I NEED TO POSTPONE/RESCHEDULE MY DATE FOR JURY DUTY?

    You can complete your juror qualification form online and reschedule your jury service via web (one time only) to a more convenient date.

    If you are unable to access the online application, you must return your completed juror qualification form along with your written request for a postponement. Postponement requests MUST be in writing (by email, fax or mail) and will NOT be considered over the phone. Requests will only be considered if your completed juror qualification form has been submitted and received. The Jury Commissioner's Office will send you a letter notifying you if your request was granted or denied. If your request was granted, the letter will also contain your new report date.

    Note: If you already returned your form, please submit your postponement request in writing. If you require an emergency, last minute postponement you still need to submit your request in writing. Last minute requests will only be granted for extreme, unforeseen emergencies.

    WHAT IF I NEED TO BE EXCUSED FOR MEDICAL REASONS?

    In order to be excused for a medical reason or disability, you must return your completed juror qualification form AND provide a written signed statement from your health care provider explaining that you are not able to satisfactorily perform jury duty and indicate the excusal length (temporary/permanent). The note can be written on a prescription pad or letterhead and it should contain your name, date of birth, and badge number or report date. We also have a Medical Excusal Form, for your doctor to complete, available in the downloads section of our website. Your doctor may email, fax or mail the excusal directly to the Jury Commissioner's Office. An excusal will only be considered if you have returned both your completed juror qualification form and the required doctor's letter before your report date. (See Question 18/Code G on your juror qualification form.)

    WHAT IF I AM NOT A UNITED STATES CITIZEN?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form with a copy of your resident alien card; green card; student visa; or work visa. (Question 11/Code A of your juror qualification form addresses this issue.)

    WHAT IF I AM NO LONGER A RESIDENT OF HARFORD COUNTY?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form with a copy of your new driver's license/change of address card or MVA issued state ID as documentation of your new address. In lieu of the aforementioned, you may submit a copy of a bill, statement, or lease agreement, etc. that shows your name and address outside of Harford County. (Question 12/Code B of your juror qualification form addresses this issue.)

    WHAT IF I AM ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY, ETC.?

    To request exemption, complete and return your juror qualification form with a copy of your military orders,  a letter from your commanding officer, or a completed Certification of Military Exemption Form, which is available in the downloads section of our website. (Questions 21-23/Codes I-J on your juror qualification form address exemption issues.)

    WHAT IF I AM A FULL-TIME STUDENT?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form with a current copy of your tuition bill or a copy of your class schedule, which contains your name and the name of your school. The Jury Commissioner's Office will send you a letter notifying you if your request for excusal was granted or denied.

    WHAT IF I HAVE CHARGES PENDING?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form with a copy of the charges or a letter of explanation listing the charges, dates, and the jurisdiction where the charges are pending. (Question 15/Code D on your juror qualification form addresses this issue.)

    WHAT IF I HAVE BEEN CONVICTED OF A CRIME?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form with a copy of the charges or a letter of explanation listing the charges, the sentence, the date and the jurisdiction where you were convicted. Please advise if the conviction was under a different name, such as an alias or maiden name. If you received a probation before judgement, a sentence of less than 6 months (including suspended time), or a pardon: you are still eligible for jury duty. (Question 16/Code E on your juror qualification form addresses this issue.)

    WHAT IF I RECEIVED A SUMMONS, BUT I RECENTLY SERVED JURY DUTY?

    Complete and return your juror qualification form. If you have served jury duty within the last 3 years, you have the option to request to be excused for recent service. Recent service means you reported and received payment/donated payment within the last 3 years. If you served in Harford County, please note on your form the dates and/or year served. Please indicate if your service was under another name, for example: initials vs first name or maiden name vs married name. If you served in another county/state, you must provide your own verification. (Question 19/Code H on your juror qualification form addresses this issue.)

    Note: Maryland Law states that an individual may be summoned for jury service after 1 year if the individual serves on a trial jury for fewer than 5 days in a 3-year period.

    WHAT IF I AM A NURSING MOTHER?

    Please contact the Jury Commissioner's Office by email or phone, at your earliest convenience, for further instructions. Any questions or requests regarding this matter must be addressedBEFORE your report date.

    WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A TRIAL (PETIT) JURY AND A GRAND JURY?

    Trial (Petit) juries are selected for both criminal and civil cases. A criminal trial jury contains 12 jurors, who are responsible for determining guilt or innocence of a defendant accused of a crime. A civil trial jury contains 6 jurors, who listen to a case generally involving a dispute between two or more parties. Both criminal and civil jury trials have one or more alternate jurors, who are selected to replace a juror that has been excused or dismissed during the course of the trial. A Grand Jury consists of 23 jurors, who are called together to do two things: receive and hear evidence to determine whether probably cause exists to charge someone with a crime; and conduct certain investigations.

    WHAT IF I STILL HAVE QUESTIONS?

    Contact the Jury Commissioner’s Office by phone or email between the hours of 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. If you call the Jury Office during the morning orientation (between 9:00 a.m. to approximately 10:30 a.m.) you will NOT be able to speak to a member of the office. You can wait to call until after 10:30 a.m. or leave a message and wait for someone to return your call. Please be patient. Calls/messages are returned in the order they are received. Due to the high volume of calls, you may receive a quicker response by emailing your questions to jurycommissioner@harfordcountymd.gov.

    Questions or comments webmaster@harfordcountymd.gov
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