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My Jury Service Journal

I thought it might interest a few, i have never been on one and felt a bit apprehensive at the whole process. i was surprised to learn that some people had been summoned on four occasions!.

No case specifics will be discussed.

Having been summoned for jury service in December, today was the first day. Never served before and really considered of wriggling out of it on this occasion as it will be a real (PITA) inconvenience for me. In retrospect i am happy to do my civic duty. (begrudgingly)

Day one.

9.00 - Check in at the crown court, get checked through security.

9.30 - Jury clerk introduces herself, we have to show a photo ID to confirm our identity. Informed that there are two cases today, two jury's.

10.00 - We are shown an video, a guide to the jury service.

10.30 - We are told to sit tight and wait for us to be called by the judge.

In the meantime BBC news channel is switched on as entertainemnt.

11.45 - Jury clerk informs one case has been adjourned, calls out names for jury for the other case.

12.30 - Remaining potential jurors informed to leave and return tommorrow.

How many others have served?

Sid
 

Billo

Active Member
I've done it twice, there can be a lot of sitting around but, the clerks of the court are normally on the ball as to how long a trial will last and when the new ones are due to start so they tend to be able to cut down the waiting.
After a couple of boring reserve jury's I eventually got
A small fraud/theft case.......some haulage guy was owed money so he took back 'his' refrigerated trailer (they are worth a small fortune!)
A drink driving case where the guy was so drunk he got into the back seat of his car and tried to argue that it was intentional.
A shoplifting case which lasted 2 minutes when the two guys finally realised that the stuff was really found in their pockets.
A burglary case when some commune guys went into the abandoned building next door to get some doors and skirting boards.
A murder which after 3 days changed to a manslaughter charge.
 
Inconvienence for me, you are expected to go for a minimum of two weeks could be more. That is quite a considerable period, especially when i have a business to run.

It would be different for others involved depending on their circumstances, but its the hassell i've gone through/going through to accommodate it, not to mention i will for the period be financially worse off.

Thats not the primary goal of this thread, valid points nonetheless.

Sid
 
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tomson

Active Member
I did jury service a few years ago. Managed to get it postponed the first time but the second time they were adamant I had to do it (tried to get out of it due to lost earnings, being self-employed, but they were having none of it). Was supposed to be there for 2 weeks.

Days 1 & 2 were spent sitting, waiting, reading.
Day 3 - in court for about 2hrs before the case was thrown out. Went home early.
Days 4 & 5 - more sitting, waiting, reading.

Asked politely if I could be excused for the following week and they said yes. :thumbsup:



Never been on one myself, don't know why everyone whinges on about it though?

For me it was the loss of income. It was also incredibly dull - might have been a different story if i was on a decent case though.
 
Days 1 & 2 were spent sitting, waiting, reading.
Day 3 - in court for about 2hrs before the case was thrown out. Went home early.
Days 4 & 5 - more sitting, waiting, reading.

Asked politely if I could be excused for the following week and they said yes. :thumbsup:

Great best take a few mags!

Might give your suggestion a go next week. :smashin:

Sid
 

rickinyorkshire

Distinguished Member
2 weeks paid off work that doesn't come out of your annual holidays! Yes please. :D
 

DJT75

Distinguished Member
2 weeks paid off work that doesn't come out of your annual holidays! Yes please. :D

At nowhere near my normal salary leaving me massively out of pocket - doesn't appeal to me at all.


However I did serve as a witness on a GBH case a few years ago, I was the only witness the defendant had & he got off (although I was actually called by the prosecution in the end). Horrible experience, these Q.C's are clever buggers twisting every word you say. I remember turning up on the Monday, went through security & had no-one there to meet me. Sat in a canteen all day until I asked someone where I should be (can you tell I wasn't too keen at being there? :)). Turns out they didn't know I was there & I should've been upstairs waiting outside the court room with a load of louts from the other side - erm no thanks. I eventually got called on something like day 3 or 4 & spent a good hour in the dock. Scared the crap out of me.

I thought the organisation & support for people having to attend court was horrendous, I received zero guidance from anyone there & had a 2 minute brief with the defendants lawyer just moments before I was called only. Didn't have a clue where I was supposed to be or what to expect.
 

Forbez

Active Member
Did it a few years back, where the main case was regarding a family's lack of care for their children, it was even front page of the sunday newspapers.
bloody boring though!
 

rickinyorkshire

Distinguished Member
Ah..i assumed they would match your wages or compensate you? My bad.
 

DJT75

Distinguished Member
Ah..i assumed they would match your wages or compensate you? My bad.

Unfortunately not. An employer does not have to pay you whilst you are on jury service. But you can claim for travel/food expenses and loss of earnings from the court, however, there are limits on the amount that you can claim.

Maximum allowances depending on actual proven earnings
The first 10 days of service - Up to 4 hours - £31.56, over 4 hours - £63.12
11th - 200th days of service - Up to 4 hours - £63.12, over 4 hours - £126.25
201st day & above - Up to 4 hours - £110.82, over 4 hours - £221.63

I looked this all up the other week for a colleague who's been called up for jury service. The first 10 days basically screws the majority of people entirely.
 

johntheexpat

Distinguished Member
What price justice?
Perhaps if we did away with trial by jury then all this banter about loss of income would be irrelevant. Either that or give the responsibility for dishing out justice to the poor, uneducated and desperate.
 

Steve170

Active Member
What price justice?
Perhaps if we did away with trial by jury then all this banter about loss of income would be irrelevant. Either that or give the responsibility for dishing out justice to the poor, uneducated and desperate.

Not sure if that's not already the case a lot of the time. It's been suggested plenty of times that the more educated people, tending to be the higher earners, are able to get out of jury service more easily than others. Saying that, I think there was supposed to be a crack down a few years ago because there was concern about the ease with which people were avoiding it by citing loss of earnings.

I was called up twice within 6 years. First time, I did a couple of weeks on a case. Second time, I sat around for 3 days without being allocated to a case, before being dismissed. I was fortunate in my employer allows you to go on full pay, else I'd have been seriously out of pocket.

The time I served on a case was, quite frankly, scary because of the attitude and ability of some of the other jurors. There were several women who seemed put out they were being kept away from 'Trisha' or whatever daytime TV was popular then and couldn't be less interested in concentrating on the case. There was one guy who (in all seriousness) when the jury was in disagreement said he would vote in whatever direction meant the trial would be over the quickest, so he could go home!

Why can't the government legislate that all employers must fully pay people called on jury service for, say, up to 2 weeks. That would cover most trials in local criminal courts and disuade people from trying to avoid it.
 
Day 2

10.15 - Arrive at court

10.45 - Advised of no cases thus far (oh no not again)
Apparently everyones pleading guilty today.......so far :facepalm:

Proceded to watch Murray defeat an ailing nadal :thumbsup:

Whilst counting that there are 86 chairs, (inc dining area) two posters are stuck upside down & calculating the seating area volume is (excluding nooks and crannies) 87.54 m³, we are informed of no change. :rotfl::boring::suicide::rolleyes:

12.55 all 56 of us are informed to leave and return at 10.15 the next day. :clap:

More hopefull tommorrow. :)

Sid
 
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DJT75

Distinguished Member
Day 2

10.15 - Arrive at court

10.45 - Advised of no cases thus far (oh no not again)
Apparently everyones pleading guilty today.......so far :facepalm:

Proceded to watch Murray defeat an ailing nadal :thumbsup:

Whilst counting that there are 86 chairs, (inc dining area) two posters are stuck upside down & calculating the seating area volume is (excluding nooks and crannies) 87.54 m³, we are informed of no change. :rotfl::boring::suicide::rolleyes:

12.55 all 56 of us are informed to leave and return at 10.15 the next day. :clap:

More hopefull tommorrow. :)

Sid

Any decent tottie to look at during these dull hours?
 
Any decent tottie to look at during these dull hours?

Now you mention it their was a couple of highlights to the day, but did'nt i say i won't go into specifics. :devil:

There were a couple of fine young ladies sitting together, unfortunately they were on the opposite side of the room. :thumbsdow

I was sitting next to a unstable young chap who kept wanting to go the toilets every 15 minutes or so............maybe it had something to do with all that stainless steel he had in and around his face.

Given me an idea, i'll make an attempt to go in 10 mins earlier tommorrow so i can pick n choose my sofa. :D

Sid
 
The first 10 days of service - Up to 4 hours - £31.56, over 4 hours - £63.12
11th - 200th days of service - Up to 4 hours - £63.12, over 4 hours - £126.25
201st day & above - Up to 4 hours - £110.82, over 4 hours - £221.63

I looked this all up the other week for a colleague who's been called up for jury service. The first 10 days basically screws the majority of people entirely.

My couple of days observation, they seam to make a concerted effort to get jury's before midday and let the remainder go, today they let everyone go. A cost curbing exercise obviously, not that i blame them, its exactly what i would do.
The problem from a Selfish point of view is that you simply can not plan around that!

Sid
 

unique

Moderator
Unfortunately not. An employer does not have to pay you whilst you are on jury service. But you can claim for travel/food expenses and loss of earnings from the court, however, there are limits on the amount that you can claim.

Maximum allowances depending on actual proven earnings
The first 10 days of service - Up to 4 hours - £31.56, over 4 hours - £63.12
11th - 200th days of service - Up to 4 hours - £63.12, over 4 hours - £126.25
201st day & above - Up to 4 hours - £110.82, over 4 hours - £221.63

I looked this all up the other week for a colleague who's been called up for jury service. The first 10 days basically screws the majority of people entirely.

no it doesn't. those are daily rates, £16380pa tax free. at a rough calculation when tax and NI is considered, someone would only be potentially out of pocket if they were paid over £24k pa which is close to the national average wage. most people aren't paid over £24k so it doesn't affect the majority of people
 

Dancook

Distinguished Member
no it doesn't. those are daily rates, £16380pa tax free. at a rough calculation when tax and NI is considered, someone would only be potentially out of pocket if they were paid over £24k pa which is close to the national average wage. most people aren't paid over £24k so it doesn't affect the majority of people

If you say they are paying close to the national average wage, then if they paid people what they earn - no one would be out of pocket and their average pay out would be close to what they were paying out before?
 

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