Rule 4-404. Jury selection and service.
To identify the source lists from which the master jury list is built.
To establish a uniform procedure for jury selection, qualification, and service.
To establish administrative responsibility for jury selection.
To ensure that jurors are well informed of the purpose and nature of the obligations of their service at each stage of the proceedings.
This rule shall apply to all trial courts.
Statement of the Rule:
(1) Master jury list and jury source lists; periodic review.
(1)(A) The state court administrator shall maintain for each county a master jury list as defined by the Utah Code.
(1)(B) The master jury list for each county shall be a compilation of the following source lists:
(1)(B)(i) driver licenses and identification cards for citizens of the United States 18 years of age and older from the Drivers License Division of the Department of Public Safety; and
(1)(B)(ii) the official register of voters from the Elections Division of the Office of the Lt. Governor.
(1)(C) The Judicial Council may use additional source lists to improve the inclusiveness of the master jury list for a county.
(1)(D) At least twice per year the state court administrator shall obtain from the person responsible for maintaining each source list a new edition of the list reflecting any additions, deletions, and amendments to the list. The state court administrator shall renew the master jury list for each county by incorporating the new or changed information.
(1)(E) The master jury list shall contain the name, address, and date of birth for each person listed and any other identifying or demographic information deemed necessary by the state court administrator. The state court administrator shall maintain the master list on a data base accessible to the district courts and justice courts of the state.
(1)(F) The state court administrator shall compare the number of persons on each master jury list for a county with the population of the county 18 years of age and older as reported by the Economic and Demographic Data Projections published for the year by the Office of Planning and Budget. The state court administrator shall report the comparison to the Judicial Council at its October meeting during even numbered years. The sole purpose of this report is to improve, if necessary, the inclusiveness of the master jury list.
(2) Term of service and term of availability of jurors.
(2)(A) The following shall constitute satisfactory completion of a term of service of a juror:
(2)(A)(i) serving on a jury panel for one trial whether as a primary or alternate juror regardless of whether the jury is called upon to deliberate or return a verdict;
(2)(A)(ii) reporting once to the courthouse for potential service as a juror;
(2)(A)(iii) except for a juror living in a county of the fourth, fifth, or sixth class or a county of the third class with populations up to 75,000, complying with a summons as directed, even if not directed to report to the courthouse; or
(2)(A)(iii) expiration of the term of availability.
(2)(B) The term of availability of jurors shall be as follows, unless a shorter term is ordered by the court:
(2)(B)(i) one month for the trial courts of record in Salt Lake county;
(2)(B)(ii) three months for the trial courts of record in Davis, Utah, and Weber counties; and
(2)(B)(iii) six months for all other courts.
(3) Random selection procedures.
(3)(A) Random selection procedures shall be used in selecting persons from the master jury list for the qualified jury list.
(3)(B) Courts may depart from the principle of random selection in order to excuse or postpone a juror in accordance with statute or these rules and to remove jurors challenged for cause or peremptorily.
(4) Qualified jury list.
(4)(A) For each term of availability as defined above, the state court administrator shall provide, based on a random selection, to the court the number of jurors requested by that court. This shall be the list from which the court qualifies prospective jurors. The names of prospective jurors shall be delivered to the requesting court in the random order in which they were selected from the master jury list. The court shall maintain that random order through summons, assignment to panels, selection for voir dire, peremptory challenges, and final call to serve as a juror; or the court may rerandomize the names of jurors at any step.
(4)(B) For each term of availability the court should request no more than the number of prospective jurors reasonably calculated to permit the selection of a full jury panel with alternates if applicable for each trial scheduled or likely to be scheduled during the term. The number of prospective jurors requested should be based upon the size of the panel plus any alternates plus the total number of peremptory challenges plus the anticipated number of prospective jurors to be postponed, excused from service or removed for cause less the number of jurors postponed to that term.
(4)(C) The clerk of the court shall mail to each prospective juror a qualification form. The prospective juror shall file the answers to the questions with the clerk within ten days after it is received. The state court administrator shall develop a uniform form for use by all courts. In addition to the information required by statute, the qualification form shall contain information regarding the length of service, and procedures and grounds for requesting an excuse or postponement.
(4)(D) If a prospective juror is unable to complete the answers, they may be completed by another person. The person completing the answers shall indicate that fact.
(4)(E) If the clerk determines that there is an omission, ambiguity, or error in the answers, the clerk shall return the form to the prospective juror with instructions to make the necessary addition, clarification, or correction and to file the answers with the clerk within ten days after it is received.
(4)(F) The clerk shall review all answers and record the prospective juror as qualified or disqualified as defined by statute.
(4)(G) The clerk shall notify the state court administrator of any determination that a prospective juror is not qualified to serve as a juror, and the state court administrator shall accordingly update the master jury list.
(4)(H) A prospective juror whose qualification form is returned by the United States Postal Service as "undeliverable," or "moved - left no forwarding address," or "addressee unknown," or other similar statement, shall not be pursued further by the clerk. The clerk shall notify the state court administrator who shall accordingly update the master jury list.
(4)(I) If a prospective juror fails to respond to the qualification questionnaire and the form is not returned by the U.S. Postal Service as undeliverable, the clerk shall mail the qualification form a second time with a notice that failure to answer the questions may result in a court order requiring the prospective juror to appear in person before the clerk to complete the qualification form. If a prospective juror fails to answer the questions after the second mailing, the qualification form and a summons may be delivered to the sheriff for personal service upon the prospective juror. The summons shall require the prospective juror to answer the questions and file them with the court within ten days or to appear before the clerk to prepare the form. Any prospective juror who fails to answer the questions or to appear as ordered shall be subject to the sanctions set forth in the Utah Code.
(5) Excuse or postponement from service.
(5)(A) No competent juror is exempt from service.
(5)(B) Persons on the qualified juror list may be excused from jury service, either before or after summons, for undue hardship, public necessity or because the person is incapable of jury service under the Utah Code. The court shall make reasonable accommodations for any prospective juror with a disability. Excuse from jury service satisfies the prospective juror's statutory service obligation.
(5)(C) A prospective juror may be postponed to later in the term or to a future term for good cause.
(5)(D) Without more, being enrolled as a full or part-time post-high school student is not sufficient grounds for excuse from service.
(5)(E) Disposition of a request for excuse from service or postponement may be made by the judge presiding at the trial to which panel the prospective juror is assigned, the presiding judge of the court, or the judge designated by the presiding judge for that purpose. The presiding judge may establish written standards by which the clerk may dispose of requests for excuse from service or postponement.
(6) Summons from the qualified jury list.
(6)(A) After consultation with the judges or the presiding judge of the court, the clerk shall determine the number of jurors needed for a particular day. The number of prospective jurors summoned should be based upon the number of panels, size of the panels, any alternates, the total number of peremptory challenges plus the anticipated number of prospective jurors to be postponed, excused from service or removed for cause. The clerk shall summon the smallest number of prospective jurors reasonably necessary to select a trial jury.
(6)(B) The judge may direct that additional jurors be summoned if, because of the notoriety of the case or other exceptional circumstances, the judge anticipates numerous challenges for cause.
(6)(C) Juror summons.
(6)(C)(i) The summons may be by first class mail delivered to the address provided on the juror qualification form or by telephone.
(6)(C)(ii) Mailed summonses shall be on a form approved by the state court administrator. The summons may direct the prospective juror to appear at a date, time, and place certain or may direct the prospective juror to telephone the court for further information. The summons shall direct the prospective juror to present the summons for payment. The summons may contain other information determined to be useful to a prospective juror.
(6)(C)(iii) If summons is made by telephone, the clerk shall follow the procedures of paragraph (9) of this rule.
(7) Assignment of qualified prospective jurors to panels. Qualified jurors may be assigned to panels in the random order in which they appear on the qualified jury list or may be selected in any other random order. If a prospective juror is removed from one panel, that prospective juror may be reassigned to another panel if the need exists and if there are no prospective jurors remaining unassigned.
(8) Selection of prospective jurors for voir dire. Qualified jurors may be selected for voir dire in the random order in which they appear on the qualified jury list, or may be selected in any other random order.
(9) Calling additional jurors. If there is an insufficient number of prospective jurors to fill all jury panels, the judge shall direct the clerk to summon from the qualified jury list such additional jurors as necessary. The clerk shall make every reasonable effort to contact the prospective jurors in the order listed on the qualified jury list. If after reasonable efforts the clerk fails to contact a juror, the clerk shall attempt to contact the next juror on the list. If the clerk is unable to obtain a sufficient number of jurors in a reasonable period of time, the court may use any lawful method for acquiring a jury.
Effective November 1, 2016