Summons for Grand Jury Service - Frequently Asked Questions
How was my name selected?
You have already received, completed, and returned the Juror
Qualification Questionnaire and based upon your answers, you have been
found qualified to serve as a federal court juror. Your name has been
randomly selected from the list of qualified jurors for the Southern
District of Indiana to participate in the selection of a grand jury.
Why do I have to complete another questionnaire?
Since you likely received the Juror Qualification Questionnaire several
months ago, some of your information may have changed. In addition to
updating records, the Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire seeks
supplemental information, which will be used to assist with the grand
jury selection process.
Can I complete my questionnaire online?
Not at this time. However, the court may offer this option in the
What should I do if I have to request to be excused from Grand Jury
If you are requesting a permanent excuse from Grand Jury service due to
illness or a serious disability, or other physical condition, a
physician’s statement explaining that your medical condition will
prohibit your serving as a juror will be required. If you have a
legitimate reason other than medical, why you cannot serve as a Grand
Juror, please submit a written request to be excused, which will be
reviewed by the court for determination.
How will I know if I have been excused from Grand Jury service?
Requests for excuse will be presented to the court for a ruling prior to
your reporting date. Once the ruling is returned by the court, you will
receive a phone call indicating the ruling and you will receive written
Please note that a completed and returned Summons for Grand Jury Service
questionnaire is required in order to consider a request for excuse.
What am I supposed to do if I get a Summons for Grand Jury Service?
Complete both sides of the Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire
and return it in the enclosed, postage-paid envelope within ten (10)
days. Keep the Summons to Appear, the information brochure and directions for your reference.
Review the Summons to Appear and the information brochure and follow the instructions to appear on
the date, time and place specified.
Jury proceedings are highly confidential and your participation should
not be disclosed!
What if I have been called to serve in county court at the same time?
Please contact the Jury Administration office.
How long does Grand Jury selection take?
Jury selection time varies. Generally, you should know by noon whether
you are selected to serve on the Grand Jury.
What happens during the Grand Jury selection process?
Once you are seated in the courtroom, the judge will explain the Grand
Jury process. You will take an oath, promising to answer all questions
After you are sworn in, you will begin a questioning process called
“voir dire,” which means “to speak the truth.” During this process, the
judge will question you and other prospective Grand Jurors. Though some
of the questions may seem personal, you should answer them completely
and honestly. If you are uncomfortable answering them, ask to approach
the bench and answer the question privately.
Remember: Questions are not asked to embarrass you. They are intended
to make sure members of the Grand Jury have no opinions or past
experiences which might prevent them from making an impartial decision.
How many people are selected for Grand Jury service?
Twenty-three (23) members will be selected to
serve on the Grand Jury. Alternates are also selected in the event a
Grand Juror may not be able to fulfill his/her obligation to complete
his/her term of service.
I have already served or have been called for service in county court.
Do I have to serve in the federal court too?
Yes. County and federal courts operate separately from one another, so
your service in county court does not satisfy your obligation to serve
in federal court.
What happens if I do not report for Grand Jury duty?
Title 28, United States Code, §1866(g)
provides: “Any person summoned for jury service who fails to appear
as directed shall be ordered by the District Court to appear forthwith
and show cause for his failure to comply with the summons. Any person
who fails to show good cause for noncompliance with a summons may be
fined not more than $1,000.00, imprisoned not more than three days,
ordered to perform community service, or any combination thereof.”
What if I need special accommodations while
serving as a Grand Juror?
Qualified individuals with disabilities have
the same opportunity and obligation to serve as individuals without
disabilities. If you need special accommodations such as assistance
with a wheelchair, hearing devices, or special seating, please contact
Jury Administration once you have received your Summons for Grand Jury
Service. If certain accommodations cannot be met, however, you may
submit a written request to be excused.
How do I get to the courthouse and where should I park?
For directions to the courthouse and parking
information, please check
Maps, Directions & Travel Resources. Entry
into the Indianapolis federal courthouse BEFORE 8:00 AM can only
be made through the handicapped entrance, which is located at the corner
of New York and Pennsylvania Streets (northeast corner of the building).
What if I do not have any transportation?
You are responsible for providing your own
transportation to the courthouse. If you cannot drive yourself, you
should arrange public transportation, or have someone drive you. This
court does not provide reimbursement for taxi fares. You may call Jury
Administration to see if carpool arrangements can be made. If we cannot
assist you with transportation, you may submit a written request to be
How long is a typical Grand Jury day and will breaks be provided?
A normal Grand Jury day will begin between
8:45 and 9:45 a.m. and will end between 5:00 and 5:30 p.m. Breaks are
provided throughout the day. Generally, there will be a mid-morning
break, a break for lunch and two afternoon breaks. Snacks and beverages
are provided by the court; however, lunch is not provided by the court.
You are welcome to bring your own snacks and beverages if you have
certain dietary restrictions.
Can a family member or friend be present with me in the court?
Grand Jury matters are not open to the public
and only members of the Grand Jury will be allowed into the courtroom.
What happens if I am late for Grand Jury selection on the first day?
It is important that you arrive on time. If
you are unavoidably delayed, please contact Jury Administration
What should I do if I am sick or have an emergency the day that I am
supposed to report?
If a real emergency occurs such as a sudden
illness, accident, or death in the family - please contact Jury
What should I bring with me to the court?
All persons are required to show a valid
government-issued identification card before being allowed entry.
At a minimum, the identification card must show the person's photo,
name, and date of birth. You may also bring books, magazines, study material. Cell
phones, laptops, and beepers are permitted in the building. However,
Court Security Officers will screen such equipment through a
magnetometer prior to entering the building. All electronic equipment
must be turned OFF in the courtroom. The courthouse does not have
wireless internet access; however, there may be locations near the
courthouse where it is available over a lunch break for checking e-mail,
etc. Jury Administration or a Deputy Clerk would be happy to advise you
of those specific locations.
Please be advised that you can only gain access into the Indianapolis
courthouse before 8:00 AM by using the handicapped entrance located on
the northeast corner of the building at New York and Pennsylvania
streets. All other doors will be locked until 8:00 AM.
What if I cannot attend every Grand Jury session during my term of
If selected, the court anticipates that you will make every effort to
attend as many sessions as physically possible. However, due to
emergencies, this may not always be possible. Should these situations
arise, please contact your Grand Jury foreperson immediately to ensure
that your absence would not interfere with the scheduled session’s
proceedings. A Grand Jury session cannot proceed unless a quorum is
present. A quorum is sixteen (16) jurors.
What if I have scheduled appointments or vacations?
Grand Jury Service has a six to eighteen month term of service and the
court understands that you may have a vacation or obligation previously
scheduled which may conflict with Grand Jury sessions. If you are
selected to serve as a Grand Juror, you will be given a schedule for the
entire term of service and will have the opportunity to notify the
foreperson of your panel of your previously scheduled vacation dates.
If you have a concern about committing to the grand jury because of
extended absences, you may address your concern(s) during the grand jury
Is there a dress code?
Your responsibilities as a Grand Juror are of
utmost importance and your attire is indicative of that importance and
the seriousness you attach to your duties. Therefore, you should wear
comfortable but appropriate, business-like clothing. You may also wish
to bring a sweater or a jacket for your comfort. Shorts, jeans,
T-shirts, tank tops and sweatshirts should not be worn.
Will I be paid for Grand Jury service?
Yes. For details, check
Juror Payment Information.
What if my boss does not want me to serve?
In accordance with
Title 28, United States Code, Section 1875,
“no employer shall discharge, threaten to discharge, intimidate, or
coerce any permanent employee by reason of such employee’s jury service,
the attendance or scheduled attendance in connection with such service,
in any court of the United States.” If the employer violates this law,
he/she may be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $1,000.00 for
each violation for each employee. The employer shall also be liable for
damages, including any loss of wages or other benefits suffered by an
employee. Jury service is a citizen’s obligation and the employer has to
provide the employee with the time to serve
Is my employer obligated to pay regular salary during Grand Jury
Prior to reporting, please check with your
employer regarding its jury duty policy. In Indiana, such policies are
entirely discretionary with employers; employers are not specifically
obligated to continue jurors’ regular pay during jury service.
Where can I get proof of my service to give to my employer?
If you are not selected as a juror, you may go
to the Clerk’s Office located on the first floor in Room 105 and ask for
a Juror’s Certificate of Attendance. If you are selected for service,
you will receive a certificate at the end of your service. If you forgot
to get a certificate, please contact Jury Administration and one may be
faxed or mailed to you.
What if I have received a Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire
for a person who no longer lives at this mailing address?
If you can provide a current address, please
write the new address in PART 1 of the Summons for Grand Jury
Service, located at the bottom and return it in the enclosed,
postage-paid envelope. If you do not know the person or do not have a
forwarding address, please write “return to sender” on the outside
window envelope and return it through the postal service.
What if I did not receive a return addressed envelope?
The court apologizes for this oversight. The
Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire can be mailed to:
U. S. DISTRICT COURT
46 E. OHIO STREET, ROOM 105
INDIANAPOLIS, IN 46204
What if the person who received the Summons for Grand Jury Service is
Please write “deceased” on the Summons for
Grand Jury Service questionnaire and send it back to the court in the
postage-paid envelope provided. We apologize for the inconvenience and
appreciate your cooperation in updating our jury records.
What if I am a student?
If you are a student in or out of state and
still have, or use, a permanent address in the Southern District of
Indiana, you are still qualified to serve at this stage. Complete both
sides of the Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire and return it
as directed. A family member may complete the questionnaire on your
behalf. In doing so, they should sign the questionnaire, indicating
their name and relationship and explain why such action was necessary.
What if I moved?
Regardless of whether you have moved within
the state or out of state, please complete the questionnaire in full
including your new address in PART 1, located at the bottom of
the Notice of Jury Service, and return it in the enclosed postage-paid
envelope. Once processed, your address will be updated and, if you are
no longer qualified to serve in the
Southern District of Indiana,
you will receive written notice of your disqualification.
What if I cannot return the Summons for Grand Jury Service questionnaire
within 10 days?
The court understands if you are out of town
or have other circumstances that may slow your response time. If this
situation arises, please call the jury office as soon as possible to
inform them of the circumstances.