Austin TX Real Estate - Hill Country Austin Lakeway Homes for Sale: My Jury Duty Experience Was Nothing to Write Home About

My Jury Duty Experience Was Nothing to Write Home About

My very exciting day just turned into a dud... I've waited over half my life to get a jury duty summons. Everyone I know is getting them all the time, but not me.

jury duty austin txAnd then, about 2 weeks ago, it finally happened!! I finally received my first jury duty summons!!  I was so excited! People thought I was crazy...

I went to the website to answer all the questions, and a date of April 12th was spit out. "Don't schedule anything else for that date," they say. And I didn't.

I got up early so I could get the kids to school early so I could get through traffic because I had a long drive. I didn't get a summons for the city I live in. I got a summons for the COUNTY. That means, they can make you drive wherever they want you to drive. I got there and went prepared with phone, books, hubby's new ipad that I didn't really know how to use, magazines, pens, business cards, the works...

"Keys, wallet, and book only m'am"  Huh? What? How was I supposed to get anything done? I went back to my car to drop everything else off, and I watched many other people with the same actions.

We were sitting in the lobby waiting and waiting. We finally thought they would bring us in at 9am when they confirmed someone was definitely a no-show since they were 30 minutes late. Out goes the paperwork for her warrant for not showing up. Man, they're serious about jury duty!!

9:30am rolls around and I went up to the desk to ask what was going on. Like rumored amongst us, they were trying to settle the case without us. 10am rolls around. A lady asks if we're allowed to go outside to get some fresh air and check our messages. A lady comes back with a message from the judge that she'll call us in within 5 minutes. 

10 minutes later, we see people walking out of the court room.  Darn, looks like they settled... We went in and sat in our numbered chairs. I was lucky #7.  The judge explained what happened, and this is funny...

The plaintiff was suing the defendant for an accident that happened in 2010. The plaintiff represented herself and didn't speak English. The Defendant had an attorney, but he didn't speak Spanish so they brought in an interpreter. With all the translations going on, the judge finally figured out that the plaintiff was trying to pull a fast one. She was in small claims court with a maximum of $10,000 but wanting upwards of $50k.

Apparently, she had an attorney who filed the case in the proper court with the jurisdiction to handle the high amount, but didn't think she had a case, so he fired her as a client, and the plaintiff filed in small claims 2 days before her 2 year deadline.

Needless to say, hearing the story from the judge was the highlight of the entire process. We were sent home. I donated the $6 to a Child Welfare charity on the list, and was back at my desk by 11am.

I can't wait for my next summons so I can actually go through the process instead of just sitting in a lobby bored with nothing to do...


**Are You Packed Yet?**

donna harris Realtor Austin TX blog

Donna Harris, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Austin Skyline

Austin TX Real Estate

and the surrounding areas of Lakeway, Bee Cave, West Lake Hills, Cedar Park, Round Rock, Spicewood, Circle-C, Steiner Ranch, and everywhere in between... Hill Country Austin TX Real Estate and beyond. Whether you're buying or selling an Austin home, I'll be with you every step of the way. 

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Copyright© 2013 By Donna Harris, All Rights Reserved. You may re-blog with links back to this post.
* My Jury Duty Experience Was Nothing to Write Home About
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Comment balloon 5 commentsDonna Harris • April 12 2013 12:07PM


Donna - I had only been in the US for a month when I received a notification for jury service. Took all sorts of paperwork to prove I was ineligible. A simple phone call certainly wasn't enough.

Posted by Larry O'Sullivan over 7 years ago

Donna -- I had been called for jury service three times before my wife was called once, and then they tried to let her off because of a minor physical impairment.  She had to make a couple calls to be put back into the pool of jurors.   Sometimes the system just seems strange.

Posted by Steven Cook (No Longer Processing Mortgages.) over 7 years ago

That's a buzz kill. I think we would all be surprised how much time wasting goes on in the judicial system.

Posted by Ellie McIntire, Luxury service in Central Maryland (Ellicott City Clarksville Howard County Maryland Real Estate) over 7 years ago

That's completely different from my experience Donna. Last time I was notified I had to call in every night for a week to see if I had to go in the next day. Finally on the fourth day I did. Seems there were hundreds of people called in. We just sat around in the main room waiting to see if any one of us would be sent to a courtroom. I was finally sent to one with maybe 30 others for a twelve person jury. The first 12 are called, and then the lawyers interview us to see if they want us or not - thinking we may have views or prejudice for or against. Many were disqualified, as was I. Only the morning was shot, and I went home!

Posted by John M. Scott, Broker / Owner San Francisco Bay Area (BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties) over 7 years ago

Amazing how different the different counties, cities, and states do their jury duty.

Posted by Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator (Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - about 7 years ago