Jury duty is an opportunity for the Judicial Branch to showcase legal procedure to the public. It is live, reality courtroom drama, and if you are selected to sit on a jury, then you have a reserved seat up front for the trial.
Unless you are 80 years old, pregnant, and the governor or lieutenant governor, you could be asked to serve on a jury. (Even if you are all those things, you still need to request to be excused.) Eligibility requirements include: US citizenship, at least 18 years old, Florida driver’s license or state identification, and a resident of Florida in the respective county.
Do you get paid to be a juror? It depends. Your employment status and length of service as a juror help determine if and how much you may get paid. You might not want to plan that trip to Acapulco based on juror compensation.
A Jury Summons, like any court summons, is a formal invitation that requires your appropriate response. You cannot just write “Our regrets” and return the summons—it is not a missive from Miss Manners! You do not have to eat with the right fork, but you do need to make a proper reply—often showing up on time does the trick.
Thank you for your service, jurors. As the Florida Bar points out regarding jury duty: “Attendance is essential to the fair administration of justice.”