Order to Show Cause Notice for Failure to Attend Jury Service

Ok so I was told you could just ignore the jury duty letters because theres no way they can prove that you got them because its not Certified mail. So I through them away two times and now I got this letter:

What I’m wondering is if this is a scare tactic, and I regret not going in the first place but thats past already . If this is just a scare tactic should I ignore it . If its not what do you guys think I should give for my explanation.

Theres no California Seal on it at all and it looks very unprofessional. Thats why I think its a just a scare tactic. So what do you guys think. :frowning:

You can get charged with contempt of court. Ive seen it follow people up to 2 years after the date. you get 3 written contacts and an ultimatum. If you get charged formally ask or a jury trial. Honestly id just get it over with, say you were on vacation/ sick contagious like strep mono and get assigned and get it done.

Do you know if I’m giving an explanation in front of a judge or its just someone who runs the Jury proccess. Because it told me to go to Room 209 and that room is the Jury selection auditorium

Just do it and learn that its stupid to ignore any court notice.In my experience you can also call in sick…it worked for me in the Westminster court.

Good luck calling in sick after skipping/ignoring two court notices.

Do not worry - ignore this one as well. Eventually you will be given a free ride to court and I’m sure the Judge will love to hear why you are above the rest of the society and don’t need to answer court notices - or how the mail doesn’t seem to make it through to you on multiple occasions.

In all seriousness - don’t ignore it - show up and say you are sorry - you’ll have to enter the Jury pool - and maybe pay a small fine. What they want is people showing up for jury duty. Act like you’re willing to serve - it was an oversight - and they won’t have any problem with you.

The ignoring the court letter cause it doesn’t look official I don’t think is going to work. What exactly is the scam there? Feel free to try and let us know how it works.

I got tired of getting jury notices so I finally just got a letter from my psychiatrist. However I did that a bit earlier in the process. At this point you’re going to need to show up. Bringing your imaginary pet dinosaur Terry will probably help if your going to try the same tack but you don’t want to overplay your hand here for obvious reasons. :wink:

And you have just admitted you ignored it on a public forum…humm

You were told that by whom? Seems to me that someone conversant with the laws in your jurisdiction wouldn’t give such bad advice.

threw. (Sorry. That’s just one of my pet peeves.)

Looks to me like the court’s dotted every i and crossed every t.

Well, it’s a scare tactic in the sense that they want to get your attention to the fact that you blew off the law. The judge will make his decision based on a number of factors. My guess is that how contrite you appear to be will play into that decision. I’m too lazy to look it up, not to mention I’m not sure of all the particulars so a search probably won’t get the right answer quickly, but ISTR that a judge recently sentenced someone for blowing off jury duty. The judge did that to “impress upon them the seriousness of jury duty.”

Of course I’m not a lawyer, so take this with a grain/shaker/whole box of salt: There’s something known as constructive service. The way the jury service notice sent to you probably falls under that.

I think you’d get yourself into a whole heap of other trouble if you blow off the summons. California’s courts aren’t strangers to bench warrants. You probably don’t want to find out you have one issued for you if you get stopped for some minor traffic offense.

That you should be a good citizen and perform your jury service, and possibly invest in a scanner.

Real life legal question? It belongs in IMHO, not General Questions. Moved.

samclem, mloderator

I’m on jury duty now, and that letter looks as official as the one I got telling me about it. If it were a scam to get you out of the house, it’s certainly a roundabout one, sending you three preliminary letters and then this.

Go and take your punishment, whatever it is, and get it over. Or call your lawyer who will be familiar with who you will have to talk to and the best thing for you to say.

Thanks for doing your part to make the American legal system work.

Not possible. OP can’t have a jury of his peers, since his peers are “people who willfully refuse their civic obligation to serve on a jury.”

These two sentences together suggest that the only reason you regret not going in the first place was because it came back to bite you in the ass.

If you show up at the appointed day and time and it turns out to be a scare tactic, then when you go to check in, they’ll have no record of your appointment; you can go home after that, happy with the knowledge that they’re not coming for you. OTOH, if you stay home and it turns out NOT to be a scare tactic, then you’ve dug yourself an even deeper hole. IOW, you’ve got a lot to lose by not showing up, and nothing to lose by going.

I’m not going to tell you to do the right thing, since that’s obviously not a high priority for you. Instead, I’ll just advise you to review the above paragraph and take whichever action you feel serves your best interest.

“To be honest, Your Honor, nobody in their right mind would want me on their jury.” Then have your motorcycle brought into the courtroom, rev it up, and ride through the courtroom and off into the sunset.

Let’s see, the first two times ignoring a summons didn’t seem to work so well. Perhaps the third time will be different…

Ever consider a career in politics? :wink:

My professional opinion is

If you can convince a judge that you didn’t receive the notices then you’ll be free and clear. Of course that judge will tell you that you have to show up for jury duty. I’m not sure if the next judge will accept the excuse that you didn’t hear the first judge.

I am not a lawyer licensed in CA. In fact, I’m not a lawyer at all. This is merely idle speculation, not legal advice.

They don’t have to prove you got them. Mailing creates a presumption that they were received. In a criminal case, that presumption is not sufficient for a conviction, but the show cause order is the beginning of a civil contempt proceeding (where the standard of proof is not “beyond a reasonable doubt”.) In any event, you’re not going to lie about receiving it, are you? The fact that you received the show cause order creates an even stronger presumption that you received the original notice; it’s still your address.

If you really hadn’t received the original summons, you’d tell the jury supervisor and he’d tell you you will serve on X date instead.

Tell the judge you couldn’t read the letter because it was out of focus.

Your professional opinion eh? In which state are you a member of the bar? Which criminal statute would it be a violation of? Criminal contempt? That’s a stretch for jury duty. And before you answer, I’m a retired attorney who is a member of the NJ bar.

edit: btw, if you’re confusing the fact that a judge can send you to jail for contempt, that’s not the same as criminal charges. If you’re claiming to be a US attorney, I really hope I don’t have to tell you that.

but even I know you never ignore any notice from the court.
Just as you never ignore any notice from the IRS or the DMV.

Even if you think it is fake, or a scam, or unfair, or bullshit, or wrong, you open letter and respond to it.
If it is a scam the agency needs to know about it because if you got a scam letter chances are other people are getting them too.

I know several people who have received scam notices about missing jury duty. However, all of those scams came by phone, from people who spoke with foreign accents, who demanded they send money right now through Western Union or they would be arrested within several hours.