Originally Posted by You
Since you brought it up, I want to ask if anyone has ever been called to appear for jury duty when they were scheduled for a cruise? I'm starting to get the heebie jeebies here, because it would be just my luck to have that happen.
I actually was summoned for jury duty twice within a 3 month period. Evidentally, unless you're CHOSEN for a jury, they can call you back and call you back and call you back...(It's like Groundhog Day!)
The laws governing jury duty vary from state to state. Here in Massachusetts, the summons comes with a card that allows you to request a deferment to a date of your own choosing. (Tip: the week before a holiday weekend is usually a good time, as the courts are not likely to begin a long trial right before a holiday.) The summons also usually directs the recipient to call an information line by telephone on the eve of the scheduled day for recorded instructions as to whether to report or not. If the instructions on the tape say not to report, one goes back into the election pool. If one must report, one becomes exempt from further jury duty for a period of time (IIRC, three years) and can opt out if one receives a summons in that time and does not wish to serve.
Of course, practices of other states may vary.
That said, it's not exactly difficult to get off a jury. In a criminal trial, something like, "Your honor, I believe that the prosecutor would not bring these charges without absolute proof that the defendant is guilty...." would bring instant dismissal. A civil trial might take a little more creativity, but only a little more.