Superior Court of california will not leave me alone!

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by oldstudent, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. oldstudent

    oldstudent Comrade

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    Aug 1, 2011

    What is it with these people!

    I explained to them about four times in the last year that as a Substitute teacher that makes only $20,000 per year and no benefits, that I simply cannot afford to lose $125 a day to serve on a jury unless it is in the summer or on a break.

    At least last year, they gave me a December 20 date during Winter break after I requested a change from September. I served at this time, but did not have to report.

    Four months later, however, I got another summons. I sent it back with a note stating that 12 months had not passed yet, which is their rule. You are told they will not summon you for another 12 months.
    Then four months later, I get another summons. I told them the same thing.
    Now, they sent me a third summons in the last eight months, telling me that my request had been denied and I that I must report on October 24.
    Do these idiots really think I can be a clear headed juror while I am losing 125 dollars a day? I don't get it.

    I will have my doctor write a note telling them that I am unable to serve. The note will not be a lie, I will be too emotionally upset to concentrate on any case due both to anger and financial stress.

    This would be a disservice to both my fellow jurors and the accused, but I guess they don't care.

    My doctor should agree to writing a note, but I would welcome any suggestions as to what he should include to increase my chances of being excused.

    I am diabetic, so this should help.

    The summons already says my excuse for not serving has already been denied ,so my back is against the wall.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Aug 1, 2011

    Do your civic duty and just be done with it.
     
  4. oldstudent

    oldstudent Comrade

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    Aug 1, 2011

    Easy to say when the shoe is on the other foot?

    How will I pay my rent and my bills?

    And of course, I served my civic duty less than eight months ago.

    They are breaking their own policy.
     
  5. KateL

    KateL Habitué

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    Aug 1, 2011

    What about people who work minimum wage jobs? Should only independently wealthy people serve on juries?

    From http://www.courts.ca.gov/3953.htm
    Why do I always get summoned but other people don't?
    Selection is random. If you have already responded to a summons or have served in the past 12 months, contact your local jury office. Explain to the staff person that you have been summoned twice in 12 months. It is important for you to contact the court to resolve the problem.
     
  6. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Aug 1, 2011

    I'm probably not the person to be commenting on this since I just found out I may be on a 10 day trial and won't get the $15 a day because I'm a teacher on summer vacation.

    You keep getting summoned, it looks like, because you keep postponing your service. If you did not report, as you said, you did not serve.

    You only get so many postponements.
     
  7. oldstudent

    oldstudent Comrade

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    Aug 1, 2011

    According to their summons, if you call in every day you are required to, you have fulfilled your service, even if you do not actually report.
    Therefore, according to their own policy, I have served.

    Maybe this time I will send the form and a letter back to the local courthouse I am required to call ,rather than the county P.O Box.
     
  8. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Aug 2, 2011

    What a coincidence that you posted this today. I got a summons for JD in the mail TODAY! I like JD myself. Last time I served was in spring, 2007 on a 2-month long case that lasted the last 2 mos of the school yr. Fortunately, that particular yr was the ONLY yr I wasn't a sub since 1st becoming a sub in 1999, so I was happy to get my full teacher salary while having fun on JD...& no, I'm not kidding. Those 2 mos were one of the best times in my life.

    Nowadays, I'm hoping to get hired for a (non-teaching) school job & most of the districts I applied for start in the same wk as my date to appear. Will I try to postpone it? Probably not.
     
  9. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Aug 2, 2011

    I really do feel for you. It's upsets me to think of all those who must serve and possibly face major financial consequences. :(
     
  10. scienceteach82

    scienceteach82 Cohort

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    Aug 2, 2011

    That sucks. I just got summoned, but I was exempt since I have babies I take care of full time. Had to go to notary to make it official.
     
  11. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Connoisseur

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    Aug 2, 2011

    I got a jury summons last year. Spent the day and did not get picked. Got paid like 7 bucks and had to give it to the school district. My lunch cost more than the check I got.
     
  12. oldstudent

    oldstudent Comrade

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    Aug 3, 2011

    I have decided not to take the doctor note route, but to write a detailed letter to the courthouse I am to serve at.
    Another baffling circumstance is the courthouse they chose for me.

    They gave me the 4th closest courthouse to my home which is 15 miles away.

    I might just suck it up if I was guaranteed two days or fewer, but there are no guarentees.

    I am sure I sound stubborn to some,
    but I also pay $447 per month for medical insurance, which I need to treat diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.

    So a trial that lasts more than a couple weeks could quite literally be a death sentence.

    I wonder how much the fine is for not reporting?
     
  13. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Aug 3, 2011

    I would just do it. I think it's a good idea not doing the doctor note if you are healthy. Be honest and do your part.
     
  14. creativemonster

    creativemonster Comrade

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    Aug 3, 2011

    There should be a number to call to find out why you are being called twice within the same year when you already served. Did I read that wrong? It does not matter if you weren't picked back in December - They should not request you again until twelve months later. They requested me for another go round a few months after my last time in but when I called their attention to it they said oops sorry. Good luck.
     
  15. jcar03

    jcar03 Companion

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  16. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Aug 3, 2011

    I assume if the courthouse is 15 miles away, you don't have to tk the fwy. I know someone who had to appear to a courthouse quite far & she wrote the excuse that she has a phobia of driving fwys & can't do it. They excused her.

    Isn't there an excusal choice on there where you can fill in the bubble stating that you don't have reliable transportation? They can't prove anything like that. For all they know, your car has broken down & you can't fix it yet. I know someone else who marked that as their reason.
     
  17. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Aug 3, 2011

    There is almost a always a financial hardship form.

    But, I think this is relevant here:

    Did anyone hear recently about the Georgia woman convinced of vehicular manslaughter because a hit and run driver killed her child? She was found at fault because she didn't cross at a designated cross walk. Her bus let them off across the street from her apartment building, but the nearest designated cross point was half a mile away. People routinely crossed at that point. Have you ever carried groceries and a few kids along a busy highway (no sidewalks) a mile out of your way? She was convicted by a white middle class jury, not one of whom had ever ridden a bus in the city.
    http://www.woai.com/mostpopular/sto...time-than-hit-and/uhLvn6ffFkaAW0gJcClEXw.cspx

    Cases like that make it extra important for as wide a cross-section of the populace as possible to serve.
     
  18. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    Aug 3, 2011

    I've been called to local JD three times. The first time, I worked part-time as a dishwasher in a restaurant. I got picked for the jury and spent the last half of that week serving on the jury. The second time I was called, I accidentally ignored the summons because I thought it was a request for donations to the police fraternity. I didn't know I had been called for JD until a coworker told me the next day the bailiff was calling my name and asking for me. I called the Clerk of Courts office the next day and explained why I had not come to the courthouse the day before. They accepted my explanation and said they didn't need me to report because they had enough jurors for the week. The last time I was called, I sat in the courtroom all day on Monday, but never got called to the jury box.

    Oh, I actually got called a fourth time, but the trial concerned a major case of child abuse. As soon as the defense lawyer found out I was a single father of three, I was excused from the jury.

    When I was in college, I got called for Federal Court JD. I explained to the judge that I was a full-time college student (this was in March) and I also had a note from my doctor explaining I could not serve due to my Chron's disease being active. The judge said that he would have just postponed my service until the summer for the college excuse, but he excused me permanently (at that time) due to my chronic illness.

    As for serving and the money paid, our local court only pays something like $10/day. I don't know of a single court that pays anywhere close to what people actually make on their regular jobs, so any person called to jury duty could claim it would be a financial hardship.....even someone working minimum wage. The fact is you would make more at your regular job, regardless of what it is. But many people feel, myself included, that it IS their civic duty to serve if called and to be as neutral and objective as possible if chosen for the jury.

    When the lawyers asked if I could be objective in the child abuse case, I told them I felt that I could. Looking back, I realize the truth was that it would have been nearly impossible for me to be completely objective with three young boys of my own. Fortunately, the defense attorney realized the same thing and used one of his exclusions to kick me off.

    As for the OP, I agree the best course of action would be to contact the Clerk of Court office and simply explain you DID get called to serve in December. That should take care of it, at least until this December.
     
  19. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I think someone with a minimum wage job would be hit even harder if they were required to serve and miss work. I realize it's our civic duty, I really do, but I also realize that for the majority of people homes aren't free, groceries aren't free, gas isn't free, and so forth. It just makes me sad that they have to endure such hardship.

    Ms.I, that's interesting about the freeway. I also have a big phobia of driving on the interstate and I've never done it. Merging?! That crap is scary! I realize most people don't even consider it, but it's very frightning to me. I worry about being called to federal court.

    Our local courthouse is just a few miles away (fifteen miles, by the way, doesn't seem far at all to me), so serving locally wouldn't be an issue.
     
  20. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Aug 3, 2011

    I don't think it is that difficult to prove financial hardship. A letter might even suffice in some places. I know people who will claim hardship when really it just means saving an extra month or two for their expensive vacation or an inconvenience. When I used to sub, I worked with an IA who was nearly in tears about getting out of jury duty for hardship reasons. She was a fairly new citizen and really wanted to do it but had a daughter to take care of and couldn't afford the lost pay. She was hourly with no benefits, so it would have been a big hit.
     
  21. jteachette

    jteachette Comrade

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    Aug 3, 2011

    Call the clerk of courts and tell that person what is going on(called 4 times in a year). I get a notice every time I'm eligible too, but here it's only once every 4 years.
     

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