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Trial (Petit) juries are selected for both criminal and civil cases. A criminal trial jury contains 12 jurors, who are responsible for determining if an accused defendant is guilty or not guilty of a crime. A civil trial jury contains 6 jurors, who listen to a case generally involving a dispute between 2 or more parties. Both criminal and civil jury trials have 1 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 2 things: receive and hear evidence to determine whether probable cause exists to charge someone with a crime; and conduct certain investigations. Please call 410-638-3251 for more information.
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Please read the following closely!
Petit/Trial Jury Orientation: If Harford County Public Schools are closed (due to weather), jurors do not report and your jury service obligation has been satisfied for the calendar year. (Please note that if you did not return your juror qualification form via mail or web, you must contact the Jury Commissioner's Office. Your jury service will be rescheduled.)
If Harford County Public Schools have a delayed opening (due to weather), the same applies for jury duty. For example: If schools open 2 hours late, you are to report for jury duty 2 hours late.
Grand Jury Orientation: If the Circuit Court for Harford County is closed (due to weather), grand jurors are cancelled and your jury service obligation has been satisfied for this calendar year.(Please note that if you did not return your juror qualification form via mail or web, you must contact the Jury Commissioner's Office. Your jury service will be rescheduled.) If the Circuit Court for Harford County has a delayed opening (due to weather), the same applies for grand jury orientation. For example, if the Circuit Court for Harford County opens at 10:00 a.m., you are to report for grand jury orientation at 10:00 a.m.
Seated Jurors: If you are already seated as a grand juror or a trial juror, you must report as instructed by the State's Attorney's Office (410-638-3500) or by the Judge presiding over the case.
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. Please call or email for more information.
The term of service for trial/petit jurors is the length of one trial (one to multiple days). Plan to be available all day. Plan ahead regarding work commitments, medical appointments, and family events. If necessary, reschedule your service BEFORE your report date. The average length of a jury trial is 2 to 3 days; however some trials last longer. With social distancing and seating limitations, it will take longer to seat a jury. You will be informed of the expected length of trial, including the time it will take to seat a jury, while you are in the courtroom during the selection process. The term of service for grand jurors is 4 months; however the grand jury reports generally 2 days per month. Please call or email for more information.
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 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. Please call or email for more information.
Failure to appear for jury duty or failure to return your completed juror qualification form is a serious matter and is punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment. You may be issued an Order (by certified mail) to appear before the Court and “Show Cause” as to why you did not respond to the summons/report for jury duty. Please call or email the Jury Commissioner’s Office for more information. SCAM ALERT: The Jury Commissioner’s Office (or a Law Enforcement agent acting on behalf of the Court/Jury Commissioner) WILL NOT call (or email) you about failing to appear for jury duty and request money (or credit card/bank/financial information or pre-paid debit cards, etc.) as a payment for a fine or bond. We WILL NOT ask you for your Social Security Number either. Protect yourself: Do NOT give the requested information. Instead, please notify the Harford County Jury Commissioner’s Office at 410-638-3251 about any suspicious phone calls/emails regarding failing to appear for jury duty AND report the scam to your local law enforcement agency (Harford County Sheriff’s Office 410-838-6600) immediately. Never give personal information when answering an unsolicited phone call or email message.
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. Please call or email for more information.
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 require handicap or oversized vehicle parking, please contact the Jury Office by phone or email for additional information.
If you have lost your summons/parking permit, you may write a note stating "On Jury Duty" and your report date to display on your dashboard or visit the downloads section of our website to
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 Level B. Please report promptly at the time indicated on your summons. Final reporting instructions will be detailed for you on the recording/website after 5 p.m. on the evening before your report date. The recording line is 410-838-3172. Reporting instructions can be found on the website. Please call or email for more information.
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. Please call or email for more information.
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 B right outside of the Jury Assembly Room.
You may bring reading material. Please call or email for more information.
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 are instructed to report, you will be given the opportunity to tell the Judge about your hardship of serving more than 1 day. Please call or email for more information.
You can complete your juror qualification form online and reschedule your jury service via web (1 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 (email, fax or mail). If you require an emergency, last minute postponement you still need to submit your request in writing (by email or fax). Last minute requests will only be granted for extreme, unforeseen emergencies. Please submit your
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 juror identification number or your jury service 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. Complete the
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, lease agreement, USPS change of address document/yellow forward mail sticker, or paystub, etc. that shows your name and address outside of Harford County. Question 12/Code B of your juror qualification form addresses this issue. Complete the
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.
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 1 year/12 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.
The Jury Assembly Room is equipped with a private room specifically designated for pumping. The Jury Commissioner's Office does not provide storage for milk. You are required to bring your own cooler & ice packs for storage. If you have other questions or concerns, please contact the Jury Commissioner's Office by phone or email, at your earliest convenience, for further instructions. Any questions or requests regarding this matter should be addressed before your report date.
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 8 a.m. to approximately 9:30 a.m.) you will not be able to speak to a member of the office. You can wait to call until after 9:30 a.m. or send an email to email@example.com. 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. For more information, contact the