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Island County > Superior Court > Juror Information

JURY DUTY INFORMATION

Jury trials will resume in Superior Court in July. Please follow the directions on your summons to call in the night before your scheduled report date/s to determine if you are needed for jury selection. 

Each year approximately 13,000 potential jurors are summoned for Island County Superior Court and District Court.  If you have received a summons, please read the entire form for important information. 

Any jury inquiries can be directed to jury management at (360) 679-7361.  The toll free number for jurors calling from South Whidbey is (360) 321-5111 ext. 7361 and from Camano Island, (360) 629-4522 ext. 7361.   Individuals requesting Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodations should contact jury management.

To complete your summons online via eResponse, click here.

Juror Recording Line Phone Numbers:

    Superior Court: (800) 254-2755.  If you are required to appear at Superior Court, please arrive by 8:30 A.M.
    District Court: (800) 946-9765If you are required to appear at District Court, please arrive by 8:00 a.m.

If a jury is needed, the recorded message will indicate that you are to report by YOUR GROUP NUMBER.  It is very important to listen to the full recording for further instructions for the following week of your jury duty.  

Court Locations:

            Superior Court:  101 NE 6th St, Coupeville, WA 98239

            District Court:  800 SE 8th Ave, Oak Harbor, WA 98277

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is jury service mandatory? 

The United States Constitution and the Washington State Constitution guarantee the right to trial by jury.  Failure to attend as directed may subject you to penalties provided by law.  All Island County residents who are registered voters or licensed drivers are obligated by state law to serve as a juror unless they:

  • Are not a United States citizen;
  • Are under 18 years of age;
  • Are unable to communicate in the English language;
  • Have been convicted of a felony and their rights have not been restored.  (See RCW 29A.08.520 to check if you meet restoration requirements.)

Is there an age limit?

No.  The State of Washington does not exclude any citizen over the age of 18 from consideration based on age.

Why did I receive a summons for jury duty?

Your name has been randomly selected by computer to serve as a juror in Island County.  Potential jurors are selected from a combined Department of Licensing drivers' and identification card holders' list and voter registration. 

I received a summons again.  Why do I get one every year while my spouse has not received one?

Summonses are issued randomly and based on your information with two separate sources.  If you have a state issued ID/driver's license under one name and your voter registration has a different name or spelling, your name may appear on the list twice.  Additionally, Island County has two courts – Superior Court in Coupeville and District Court in Oak Harbor – that issue summonses.  This may also increase your chances of receiving a summons.  Please note if you have previously been granted a deferment and receive a new summons a few months later, this is still related to your original summons.  You did not get summonsed a second time. 

Example:

You received a summons in January for jury duty in April.  You requested and were granted a four month deferment with a new report date in August.  In May you receive a summons for jury duty in August.  This is still the same summons. 

Why did I get a summons if I'm not a citizen?

That is because you either have or had a Washington State issued drivers' license or identification card.  Holding either places you on a list of potential jurors for the county of your registered address.

How can I be excused from jury service?

There are two main reasons why a potential juror can be completely excused from jury service – medical and financial.  Additional documentation is required for excusals along with your completed summons. 

Medical exemption – All requests for exemption due to medical, psychiatric, or sensory limitations must be submitted by a written doctor's note clearly stating how your medical condition prohibits you from serving jury duty.  This note does not need to include personal medical information.  You may have your doctor's office fax the note directly to the Jury Manager at: 360-679-7383.  Please make sure the note includes your full name.

Financial hardship – Requests for exemption based on financial hardships must have a letter from the employer on company letterhead regarding their jury duty pay policy.  Additionally, you must also submit a letter stating the financial hardship that would be placed on you.  You do not need to divulge financial information. 

Self-employed – Exemption requests based on self-employment must provide documentation of your business, such as a copy of your business license, along with a letter stating the financial hardship that would be placed on you.  Please note self-employed persons are not automatically excluded from service as there are no exemptions based on occupation or profession, per se. 

Previous juror – If you previously served as a seated juror on a trial within the last 12 months you may be excused.  Please be sure to indicate the date, which court and, if possible, the name of the case. 

Previously scheduled events/appointments – If you have a previously scheduled conflict with the entire duration of your term, you can request a deferment.  Please be sure to provide a new availability date sometime within 4 months from your current summons date. 

                Any request for an exemption must be accompanied by a completed summons. 

If you request an exemption or deferment and do not receive a letter or phone call from the Jury Manager, your request has been granted. 

What is the penalty for skipping jury duty?

Per RCW 2.36.170, "A person summoned for jury service who intentionally fails to appear as directed shall by guilty of a misdemeanor."  Possible sanctions include the imposition of fines, community service, and/or confinement.  Please respond to your summons.

I have a conflicting appointment during one of my weeks.  What should I do?

Please call or email the Jury Manager regarding this conflict. 

What if I am unable to sit for long periods of time?

During your time as a juror you will be sitting, standing, coming and going quite frequently.  If you are chosen to be a seated juror, the judge will, at a minimum, take a break after an hour and a half of court time.  Seated jurors are also allowed to stand as needed during the trial. 

I'm active duty military.  Can I be excused?

Members of the armed forces are not exempt from jury duty simply based on their active status.  If there is a conflict with detachment or deployment dates, a deferment may be requested.  Please contact the Jury Manager with any questions.

I live on Camano Island.  Do I still need to report for jury duty?

Yes.  Unfortunately, the geographical makeup of Island County means some residents will have a lengthy commute.  However, please keep in mind that all jurors called to report for jury duty are paid $10.00 per day and receive mileage reimbursement for travel between their residence and the courthouse.  This is paid at the current state-wide accepted mileage rate.  Ferry fares are not reimbursed.

I don't have a stamp.  How can I return my summons?

If you do not wish to mail back your summons, there are two additional ways to respond.  First, you can return your paper summons in person to Court Administration at the Law & Justice building in Coupeville.  Second, you can respond online via eResponse.  Be sure to have your Candidate ID ready as you'll need this number to login. 

Where is my Candidate ID?

Located on your Juror Badge, or Part B of the summons, just below the barcode.  When responding to your summons on eResponse you do not need to include all the zeros.   

How do I know which court I am assigned to?

This is located on your Juror Badge, or Part B of the summons, where it says "Report To."  Please keep in mind that you will not be reporting unless your Group Number is selected.  Call the corresponding 1-800 Juror Information Line to hear if you've been selected.  Additionally, please note that court assignment cannot be changed.  If you are granted a deferment, you will be deferred to another date for that assigned court.

How long is my jury duty?

Check your Juror Badge for your Term of Service.  A one week term requires calling the 1-800 number for your assigned court the night prior to your report date.  A two week term requires calling the 1-800 number for your assigned court twice – the night prior to your report date and the following week. 

Example:  Two week Superior Court term

                Week 1: Call Monday night to see if you are needed for Tuesday.

                Week 2: Call Monday night to see if you are needed for Tuesday.

If you are not selected to report for a trial during this time, your jury service is complete.

My group number was selected to report for jury duty.  How long is the trial going to last?

At the beginning of the juror selection process the judge or the attorneys trying the case will inform you of the estimated length of trial.  This process typically lasts half a day or more in Superior Court, less than that in District Court.  If you are not chosen to be a seated juror, you will be dismissed after this process.  If you become a seated juror, your service obligation is now the duration of the trial.

I have a family member that works in Law Enforcement.  Can I be excused?

No.  Civil cases, such as contract claims, personal injury claims, and landlord/tenant disputes can also be tried before a jury and may not have any connection with Law Enforcement.  If you feel there is a conflict of interest or bias on the case you are selected to serve on, you may bring this up with the judge or the attorneys during the voir dire process (juror questioning).  The Jury Manager cannot excuse you as a potential juror because of what you do for a living, your family makeup, or events in your past.

Do you provide childcare?

No.  Please make the appropriate arrangements for childcare prior to reporting for jury duty.

I've just returned from vacation and found a summons in my mail.  What should I do if it's past the 10 days? 

There is no penalty for submitting your summons after the ten day window.  However, please call the Jury Manager if your summons date is within two weeks.

What should I wear to court?

Acceptable court attire is business casual/casual dress.  Jeans are allowed, but please no rips or tears.  Shorts, tank tops, and flip-flops are not appropriate in the Court.  Additionally, please avoid clothing with logos, graphics, or slogans on them.  Hats are not allowed in the courtroom unless worn for religious or medical purposes. 

I received a card in the mail stating I did not turn in my summons.  I never received a summons, so what should I do?

Unfortunately, this does happen, but don't worry, you're not in trouble!  Just give the Jury Manager a call to have a new summons mailed to you.  Depending on your report date, you may have time to return your paper summons, or you may need to reply online via eResponse. 

        

General Juror Information can be viewed at Washington State Courts Jury Duty Information