Jury Duty FAQs
HOW DID I GET SELECTED?
Potential jurors are drawn from two sources into a Master Jury List, updated at least each December of every odd-numbered year.
- Boundary County list of registered voters (Voter List)
- Drivers license and state identification records issued in Boundary County by the Idaho Transportation Department. (Driver List)
The Master Jury List is created by merging the Voter and Driver Lists and removing duplicates. Three Prospective Jury Panels of 500-600 potentially eligible jurors are drawn at random from the Master Jury List each 4 months. Those potential jurors are mailed Juror Qualification Forms.
Each panel lasts for 4 months; 3 Panels are normally called per Master Jury List update (each October).
- January 1 through April 30 (Panel 1)
- May 1 through August 31 (Panel 2)
- September 1 through December 31 (Panel 3)
HOW LONG AND HOW OFTEN WILL I BE CALLED UPON TO SERVE?
Jury panels serve in Boundary County for four months. Once you have served a full jury panel, you will not have to serve again for two years. If your name is drawn before two years have elapsed, you may request not to serve and your request will be granted (please see question 5 and question 18 on the Juror Qualification Form).
When selected for a jury panel, you are assigned a juror number. On average, your juror number is drawn twice per panel. Court dates are cancelled often, and it is possible that you may go through a four month jury service panel without having to come to the courthouse. If you do come in, you will go through the jury selection process, and may or may not be selected to serve on the jury for the trial in question.
HOW DO I GET OUT OF JURY DUTY?
Idaho Code 2-211 provides "No qualified prospective juror is exempt from jury service." You are a qualified juror if you are 18 years of age or older, a citizen of the United States, a resident of Boundary County, and able to read, speak and understand the English language.
If you are a convicted felon and are still on Felony probation or parole you will be disqualified until you finish your probation or parole. A prior felony conviction alone does not disqualify you from jury duty.
If you are 70 years of age or older, or will turn 70 during the jury panel, you may request to be excused on the Juror Qualification Form.
CAN I POSTPONE SERVING ON A JURY?
There are a few special circumstances which may allow you to request a postponement from one jury panel to another. You must request to be postponed in writing.
- Nursing mothers
- A temporary medical condition
- Seasonal employment situation
- Short term family circumstances/emergency
Include a note with your jury qualification form, call (208) 267-0924), or email the Jury Commissioner at email@example.com. Please get in contact with the Jury Commissioner as soon as possible to discuss your situation.
WHAT IF I NEED A DAY OFF?
Arrangements can be made to be excused from jury duty for short periods of time. If you have a medical appointment, a special family event, including a pre-planned vacation, wedding, or a pressing employment situation that will cause you to be out of the area.
If you request to be excused after you have been assigned to an active jury docket, you will be reassigned to another docket later in the the Panel.
You must contact the Jury commissioner in writing a least 30 days in advance, except in emergency situations. You may do this by regular mail.
PO BOX 419
Bonners Ferry, ID. 83805
or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
or FAX to (208) 267-7814
or hand deliver to Boundary County Court House
Be sure to call the Jury Commissioner to discuss your situation as soon as you know you will want to be excused, especially if already assigned to a Jury Docket, or with less than 30 days notice.
You must include your name, juror number, day time phone number, the reason, and the dates requested. You may also include your email address for a confirmation response.
I HAVE A MEDICAL CONDITION ... DO I STILL HAVE TO SERVE?
A Medical Release from jury service is included in your jury packet on the back of the Jury Summons. This form should not be used for medical conditions that are temporary, such as colds, pregnancy or broken bones. These can be dealt with a temporary excuse or postponement - please contact the Jury Commissioner and/or attach a note to your Juror Qualification Form.
If you have a medical condition that makes it impossible for you to serve, have your physician fill out the Medical Release and return it to the Jury Commissioner as soon as possible.
Be sure to return the completed Juror Qualification Form within 10 days. The Medical Release form may be returned separately, but before the beginning of the Jury Panel.
For example, you receive the Juror Qualification form on March 22. It must by be returned within 10 days. The Jury Panel begins May 1st. You have until sometime BEFORE May 1st to return the Medical Release form.
In general, you will not need a medical appointment for your doctor to fill out the Medical Release. Your doctor may FAX the form to the Jury Commissioner when it is completed (208)267-7814. The FAX machine is in a secure location. Be sure to fill out the BACK of the Jury Questionnaire if you request a medical exemption.
The court may require any person requesting to be excused for a medical reason to provide documentation from their medical care provider, and medical providers may be contacted for verification.
MY BOSS CAN'T DO WITHOUT ME ...
I AM A LONG HAUL TRUCKER...
I WORK IN NORTH DAKOTA...
I AM SELF EMPLOYED...
DO I STILL HAVE TO SERVE?
Almost everyone called for jury duty is employed. The Jury Commissioner will work with all prospective jurors to reduce potential inconvenience or accommodate special circumstances. Keep in mind that you will usually have two to three weeks advance notice of jury trial dates. Moreover, the majority of trials only last 1 to 3 days.
HOW WILL I KNOW WHEN I HAVE TO REPORT FOR JURY DUTY?
You will receive a postcard from the Jury Commissioner that advises you of your qualification status. If you receive a qualified juror postcard then:
You should check this website or call (208) 267-0924 at least once per weekend for the four months the panel is active and listen to the recorded message. It specifies the date and time each juror (by juror number) should appear.
Typically, your juror number will come up twice per 4 month panel.
The jury duty information line, (208) 267-0924 is available 24/7. During office hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., this number can be used to contact the Jury Commissioner, or, if not available, to leave a message. When you call the jury duty information line, you will hear a message similar to this:
"Thank you for calling the Boundary County Jury Commissioner's Office. Jury duty information for 2014 Panel 1 Jurors serving from January 1st to April 30th is also available at www.boundarycountyid.org.
Jury duty for Thursday, October 14th
Jurors 125 through 177
Report Is Cancelled
Jury duty for Monday, November 8th
Jurors 653 through 784
Report at 8:00 AM
Please call once per weekend and remember to call after 6:00 pm the night before scheduled trial dates if not previously cancelled. If you have any questions, call this number between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or email email@example.com."
You will usually have a two to three week advance notice of trial dates for which you must appear. Your juror number is listed on the bottom of the Summons for Jury Duty included in your jury packet. Your juror number is the number you will need to determine when you are scheduled to appear. The panel number, also included on the information and summons sheet, is the designator for the entire panel serving for that four-month period.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT WHEN I APPEAR FOR JURY DUTY?
Go to the 3rd floor of the courthouse, to the large, main courtroom at the top of the stairs. There is will be 2 small tables in the main courtroom at the top of the stairs with a sign-in sheet with names listed in alphabetical order, and another sheet with seating chart numbers. Sign beside your name, find your seat/tag number, go to the long table, pick up your your seat/tag number and be seated.
There will be a brief orientation video, then jury selection. On average, the jury selection process takes from one to three hours. Sometimes there will be circumstances that will preclude the need for a jury that day; should this occur, prospective jurors will be excused as quickly as possible.
Recognizing the inconvenience, the court makes every attempt to avoid having jurors appear when not needed. Following the selection process, prospective jurors not selected to sit on the trial are excused and are free to leave or stay to observe; all trials are open to the public.
WILL I GET PAID FOR SERVING ON A JURY?
Those selected for jury duty receive $5 for a half days' service and $10 for a full day, plus 56 cents per mile round trip from residence to the courthouse. Jurors may elect to donate jury fees to the Boundary County Community Justice Department to help fund juvenile programs such as the Youth Accountability Board, Community Service, and Restitution Programs. Juvenile Services are based on Restorative Justice and the Balanced Approach, equally balancing Accountability, Community Safety, and Competency Development. You can donate your jury fees by marking "yes" on question 7 on your Juror Qualification Form.