Frequently Asked Questions
Contacting the Churchill County Jury Office:
How can I reach the Churchill County Jury Office?
The Jury Office is open Monday through Friday (excluding holidays) from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. If you would like to speak with a staff member please call 775-423-6088. The Jury Office fax number is 775-423-8578. The Jury Office address is as follows:TENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT CHURCHILL COUNTY JURY COMMISSIONER 73 North Maine Street, Suite B Fallon, Nevada 89406 775-423-6088
I am not a citizen of the United States, but I would still like to serve as a juror. Why can't I?
The law automatically disqualifies non-citizens, convicted felons whose civil rights have not been restored, and people under 18 years of age from jury service.
Why is jury service important?
The United States Constitution guarantees all people, regardless of race, religion, sex, national origin, or economic status the right to trial by an impartial jury of one's own peers. In order to uphold this guarantee, we need those summoned to participate in the jury process to ensure every citizen's right to have their case decided by an impartial jury selected from a representative pool of prospective jurors.
Who is entitled to a jury trial?
Any person charged with a criminal offense or any party in a civil case has the right to a trial by jury. All parties are equal before the law, and each is given the same fair and impartial treatment.
What are my duties as a juror?
Your duty as a juror is to weigh all of the evidence and testimony presented to you and to decide the outcome of the case based upon the law and the evidence. Your decision must be fair, impartial, and free of any bias or prejudice. Jury service is the basis of our judicial system and is essential to the administration of justice.
How are jurors selected for a trial?
After a panel is randomly selected and reports to the court, a process known as voir dire begins. During voir dire, the judge and possibly the attorneys will ask you questions to see if you can keep an open mind and be fair. After you have been questioned, you will either be selected or excused for that particular case.
If you are selected, you and the other selected jurors will receive instructions from the judge as to what is expected of you. If you are not selected, you will be allowed to leave. Your name will be placed back into the jury pool to be drawn randomly at a later date.
How long does jury service usually last if I am selected?
If you are selected to sit on a jury, the average trial length is two to five days; although, trials may be longer or shorter depending upon the facts of the case.
What are the different types of cases I might be selected for?
There are two basic types of cases, criminal and civil. In a CRIMINAL case, the jury decides the guilt or innocence of the defendant beyond a reasonable doubt. In a CIVIL case, the jury decides whether or not money damages should be given, and if so, how much those damages will be.
Is jury service mandatory?
The United States Constitution and the Nevada State Constitution guarantees the right to trial by jury. Failure to attend as directed may subject you to penalties provided by law. All Churchill County residents are obligated by state law to serve as a juror unless they:
Are NOT a United States citizen;
Are NOT a resident of Churchill County, Nevada;
Are UNDER 18 years of age;
Have been convicted of a felony.
Are Exempt from jury duty pursuant to NRS 6.020.
Can I be temporarily excused from jury service?
You may be temporarily excused from jury service on account of sickness, physical disability, serious illness or death of a member of your immediate family, undue hardship, extreme inconvenience, public necessity or if you are the primary caregiver of another person who has a documented medical condition which requires your assistance at all times (NRS 6.030).
What should I wear to jury service?
Jurors should dress comfortably, but properly for a courthouse. Shorts, mini-skirts, tank tops and halters are NOT permitted. If you report wearing any of these items, you may be asked to return home at your own expense to change into more suitable attire.
What can I bring with me to jury service?
The jury process can require a juror to wait a considerable amount of time. For this reason, jurors are encouraged to bring a book or other form of reading material with them to the jury assembly area. Laptops, Kindles or E-Reader devices may also be used. Jurors may NOT bring cameras or other electronic devices (eg. MP3 Players), which may disrupt the proceedings. Cellular phones and pagers MUST be turned off in the courtroom.
I have small children at home. Does this exempt me from jury duty?
No, but you may request a temporary excuse from service if you have very young children and do not work outside the home.
Can I bring someone to jury service with me?
Yes, they would be allowed in the courtroom during jury selection, but they are not allowed to enter the jury room.
What happens if I do not show up for jury service?
Failure to appear for jury service when summoned is a serious matter. You may be held in contempt of court and could be fined up to $500.00. It is in your best interest to appear if you are summoned to avoid any further action (NRS 6.040).
PAY FOR JURY SERVICE:
Will I be compensated for jury duty?
Yes. If you are selected as a juror, you receive $40 per day. Unselected jurors receive no compensation the first two days waiting. From the third day on, you receive $40 per day. Jurors traveling more than 30 miles (one way, from your home to the place of the trial) receive 36.5 cents per mile. Additionally, if you live more than 65 miles from the place of the trial and do not desire to return home, overnight lodging will be provided at the rate established for state employees if selection, inquiry, or trial lasts more than 1 day. No reimbursement is paid to jurors for their meals. After the Court releases you from jury duty, you are free to go. A check will be mailed to you within two weeks of the conclusion of the trial (NRS 6.150).
Must my employer pay me while I'm on jury service?
No. An employer is NOT required by law to pay employees who are on jury service but many employers do. You should check with your company's human resources department before serving to see if your company pays your salary for days you are a juror. If you DO receive your salary while on jury service, you should ask what your employer requires as proof that you served as a juror.
Can my employer fire me for performing jury service?
No. Nevada law prohibits an employer from terminating or otherwise penalizing an employee because the employee serves as a juror (NRS 6.190).
ALLOWED EXCUSES FROM JURY SERVICE:
A prospective juror may be excused if he/she:
Has a physical or mental disability that would prevent him/her from serving. The prospective juror will be required to provide a doctor's note verifying the disability.
Must provide actual and necessary care for another and alternate arrangements are not feasible. (Employment as a caregiver does not qualify)
Is unable to read or understand the English language.
Is a student.
Has been convicted of a felony.
Active military out of county.
Each request is individually reviewed. Potential jurors are encouraged to complete the request truthfully, to the best of their knowledge. Failure to do so is against the law. Jury service is a citizen's civic duty, and responsibility.
I am unable to judge anyone because of my moral or religious beliefs. May I be excused?
Nevada law does not provide for an excuse from jury service for moral or religious beliefs. You are still required to appear for jury service. When you get to a courtroom, the judge will make that decision.
I know that I will not be selected to be on a jury because of what I do for a living. Why not excuse me now and save time?
Churchill County tries civil and criminal cases, both of which require juries. The random selection process prevents you from knowing in advance what trial or even what type of trial for which you'll be selected. When you get to a courtroom the judge may excuse you. However, the Jury staff cannot excuse you as a potential juror because of what you do for a living.
What about getting a postponement?
The Jury Office realizes prospective jurors may have been summoned at an inconvenient time and is willing to defer service to a more convenient time in most instances. Jurors may request a first-time postponement in writing. Subsequent postponements are not allowed unless it is an extreme emergency that was not anticipated when the first postponement was granted.
Hopefully, we have been able to provide you with the information that you have needed. However, if you feel your individual question has not been addressed call the Churchill County jury clerks at 775-423-6088 for further advice and assistance.