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Six tips if you get called for jury duty

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Anyone, including you, can be called for jury duty.

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Earlier this spring, Grainews field editor Lisa Guenther was called for jury duty. Here are six tips she offers in case you ever receive a summons to sit on a jury.

1. When you get there

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If you need to sit down, arrive early. Latecomers might be stuck standing.

2. Devices

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Turn your cell phone off in the courtroom and don’t wear a hat when addressing the judge.

3. Compensation

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People on the jury panel were reimbursed for mileage, so make sure the court has your current address. (If you’re picked for the jury, you’ll also get a per diem, and $80 a day if your employer doesn’t cover your wages. They might also cover hotel costs if you’re traveling from afar or if you’re sequestered).

4. May I be excused?

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If you’re planning to ask to be excused, be prepared for follow-up questions from the judge.

5. Sequestration

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If you’re on the jury, and it looks like you’ll be sequestered, bring an overnight bag into
the jury room. Once the jury is sequestered, court staff might not allow you to go to your car to grab your overnight bag (they’ll probably warn you about this first thing in the morning).

6. If you're chosen

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If you’re picked for the jury, the trial will start right away. It’s impossible to know exactly how long the trial will last,
and they probably won’t give you an estimate before jury selection. But plan on being gone at least a day, and maybe all week.

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