Why we have a jury system:
Under the Constitution, a United States citizen is given certain rights; the right to a jury trial is one of those rights. Participation in jury trials provides citizens with an opportunity to:
- Incorporate community values into dispute resolution;
- Guard against abuse of power by legislatures, businesses, and government agencies;
- Avoid arbitrary or unfair sanctions by individual judges;
- Protect the rights of all citizens.
Why jurors are selected:
Jurors are important and necessary participants in our justice system. Legal disputes (cases) often will not actually go to trial (be heard by a judge or jury), because citizens are prepared to participate as jurors sitting and waiting in the jury room. A jury panel that is ready to hear a case can motivate all parties involved in a dispute to reassess their risks and claims. Much like in a game of poker, the attorneys for both sides of a dispute think that they have the “winning hand.” The mere presence of the jury may “call a bluff.” For example, it is common for a court to schedule several cases for trial on a single day because the jury is waiting and available. Frequently, none actually make it to trial.
How jurors are selected:
- Once a year the Secretary of State creates a list of citizens who may be eligible to serve on a jury. This list contains those citizens who possess a driver’s license or State of Michigan identification card.
- Identified citizens are mailed a Juror Qualification Questionnaire. After the questionnaire is completed, returned, and evaluated, a qualified citizen may be called to serve on a jury.
Jury Duty Contact Info:
If you wish to speak with the jury clerk or check on the status of your jury service, please call: Tammy Piotter (989)-269-7988.