Curious About Being Picked For Jury Duty
I am just curious about the process of selecting citizens for jury duty when the MAjury.gov website states they are “randomly chosen” and for the past 21 years I have been chosen every three years almost to the exact same date! I have many friends who have never been summoned for jury duty. Why not give them a chance to be part of the system and fulfill their civic obligation? – Joan, Holden
The court system gets that question a lot, including from us. David Wade and I did a story about this some time ago. You can read it here.
The system gets your name from the annual census your city or town conducts. (It doesn’t come from voter lists, as some people think). And what happens is, even if you serve on a jury, 3 years later your name goes back into the pool, so you have the same statistical chance of being picked (again) as someone who has never been picked. In effect, prior service doesn’t matter.
If you live in a county that has a busy court system, like Suffolk, you have an even greater chance of being chosen because the need for jurors is greater.
What do you think of this system? Should you go back in the pool after 3 years, or maybe there should be a system where you either get a longer break, or you don’t get picked again until everybody else has a turn.