Jury Duty in Arkansas—How It Works
When you receive a jury duty summons, you need to show up in the court that called you up. Jury trials are an essential part of our society—it’s important that, as U.S. citizens, we don’t neglect our civic duty.
In this article, we’ll explain how jury duty in Arkansas works.
Are you employed and need to take time off? We’ll show you how you can draft a formal leave request letter in no time if you .
You can’t apply to be on a jury—courts randomly select 12 people who meet the requirements for becoming jury members. Those requirements are as follows:
- Have a U.S. citizenship
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be able to read and write in English
- Have no felony convictions (or be pardoned for it)
- Reside in Arkansas and the county in which the court that summons you is
- Be of a good moral character and sound mind
If you can’t attend jury duty, the law allows exemption for those with a valid reason. Statutory excuses for missing out include:
- Physical and mental disabilities
- Extreme personal hardship
- Being a firefighter, soldier, medical worker, or elected official
- Full-time enrollment as a student
Receiving a summons doesn’t mean you’ll become a member of the jury—you need to go through a selection process. During the selection phase, you will need to:
- Show up in court when summons indicates in adequate attire
- Answer questions about your character so that the judge and lawyers can gauge if you’ll be a good juror
- Attend all court proceedings
Counties may have different rules when it comes to the selection process. You should check in with the court that summoned you to see how exactly they go about it.
According to Arkansas jury duty laws, failing to appear in court when summoned is illegal. If you don’t provide a valid reason to be excused, you’ll need to attend every time you’re called or face a fine of up to $500.
The judge can even charge you for contempt of court, resulting in a jail sentence.
State and federal courts usually don’t offer the same payment for the jury duty role.
|Type of Court||Pay per Day||Pay Increase|
|State and county courts||$50||No|
|Federal courts||$50||$60 if it lasts for more than ten days|
Being employed is not a valid reason for missing your jury duty—you’ll still need to show up.
Employers often try to force their employees to ignore summonses by threatening them to decrease their salary, demote, or fire them.
Most people don’t know that the Arkansas jury duty law protects employees and has penalties in place for such employers.
If you notify your employer about jury duty in advance, there’s nothing they can do to stop you from going—if they try, you can sue them.
When you begin preparing for jury duty, the first item on your list should be informing your employer. The best way to do it is to submit a formal leave request, and that’s where DoNotPay comes in!
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- Select the Request Jury Duty Leave tool
- Answer a few questions
- Upload a photo of your jury summons
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