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Rule47. Jurors.

(a)Examination of jurors. The court may permit the partiesor their attorneys to conduct the examination of prospective jurors or mayitself conduct the examination. In the latter event, the court shall permit theparties or their attorneys to supplement the examination by such furtherinquiry as is material and proper or shall itself submit to the prospectivejurors such additional questions of the parties or their attorneys as ismaterial and proper. Prior to examining the jurors, the court may make a preliminarystatement of the case. The court may permit the parties or their attorneys tomake a preliminary statement of the case, and notify the parties in advance oftrial.

(b)Alternate jurors. The court may direct thatalternate jurors be impaneled. Alternate jurors, in the order in which they arecalled, shall replace jurors who, prior to the time the jury retires toconsider its verdict, become unable or disqualified to perform their duties.Alternate jurors shall be selected at the same time and in the same manner,shall have the same qualifications, shall be subject to the same examinationand challenges, shall take the same oath, and shall have the same functions,powers, and privileges as principal jurors. An alternate juror who does notreplace a principal juror shall be discharged when the jury retires to considerits verdict unless the parties stipulate otherwise and the court approves thestipulation. The court may withhold from the jurors the identity of thealternate jurors until the jurors begin deliberations..

(c)Challenge defined; by whom made. A challenge is anobjection made to the trial jurors and may be directed (1) to the panel or (2)to an individual juror.

(d)Challenge to panel; time and manner of taking; proceedings. Achallenge to the panel can be founded only on a material departure from theforms prescribed in respect to the drawing and return of the jury, or on theintentional omission of the proper officer to summon one or more of the jurorsdrawn. It must be taken before a juror is sworn. It must be in writing or bestated on the record, and must specifically set forth the facts constitutingthe ground of challenge. If the challenge is allowed, the court must dischargethe jury so far as the trial in question is concerned.

(e)Challenges to individual jurors; number of peremptory challenges.The challenges to individual jurors are either peremptory or for cause. Eachparty shall be entitled to three peremptory challenges. Several defendants orseveral plaintiffs shall be considered as a single party for the purposes ofmaking peremptory challenges unless there is a substantial controversy betweenthem, in which case the court shall allow as many additional peremptorychallenges as is just. If one or two alternate jurors are called, each party isentitled to one peremptory challenge in addition to those otherwise allowed.

(f)Challenges for cause. A challenge for cause is anobjection to a particular juror and shall be heard and determined by the court.The juror challenged and any other person may be examined as a witness on thehearing of such challenge. A challenge for cause may be taken on one or more ofthe following grounds. On its own motion the court may remove a juror upon thesame grounds.

(f)(1) A want of any of the qualificationsprescribed by law to render a person competent as a juror.

(f)(2) Consanguinity or affinitywithin the fourth degree to either party, or to an officer of a corporationthat is a party.

(f)(3) Standing in the relationof debtor and creditor, guardian and ward, master and servant, employer andemployee or principal and agent, to either party, or united in business witheither party, or being on any bond or obligation for either party; provided,that the relationship of debtor and creditor shall be deemed not to existbetween a municipality and a resident thereof indebted to such municipality byreason of a tax, license fee, or service charge for water, power, light orother services rendered to such resident.

(f)(4) Having served as a juror, orhaving been a witness, on a previous trial between the same parties for thesame cause of action, or being then a witness therein.

(f)(5) Pecuniary interest on thepart of the juror in the result of the action, or in the main question involvedin the action, except interest as a member or citizen of a municipalcorporation.

(f)(6) Conduct, responses, stateof mind or other circumstances that reasonably lead the court to conclude thejuror is not likely to act impartially. No person may serve as a juror, ifchallenged, unless the judge is convinced the juror can and will actimpartially and fairly.

(g)Selection of jury. The judge shall determine themethod of selecting the jury and notify the parties at a pretrial conference orotherwise prior to trial. The following methods for selection are notexclusive.

(g)(1)Strike and replace method. The court shall summon thenumber of jurors that are to try the cause plus such an additional number aswill allow for any alternates, for all peremptory challenges permitted, and forall challenges for cause that may be granted. At the direction of the judge,the clerk shall call jurors in random order. The judge may hear and determinechallenges for cause during the course of questioning or at the end thereof. Thejudge may and, at the request of any party, shall hear and determine challengesfor cause outside the hearing of the jurors. After each challenge for causesustained, another juror shall be called to fill the vacancy , and any such newjuror may be challenged for cause. When the challenges for cause are completed,the clerk shall provide a list of the jurors remaining, and each side,beginning with the plaintiff, shall indicate thereon its peremptory challengeto one juror at a time in regular turn until all peremptory challenges areexhausted or waived. The clerk shall then call the remaining jurors, or so manyof them as shall be necessary to constitute the jury, including any alternatejurors, and the persons whose names are so called shall constitute the jury. Ifalternate jurors have been selected, the last jurors called shall be thealternates, unless otherwise ordered by the court prior to voir dire.

(g)(2)Struck method. The court shall summon thenumber of jurors that are to try the cause plus such an additional number aswill allow for any alternates, for all peremptory challenges permitted and forall challenges for cause that may be granted. At the direction of the judge,the clerk shall call jurors in random order. The judge may hear and determinechallenges for cause during the course of questioning or at the end thereof.The judge may and, at the request of any party, shall hear and determine challengesfor cause outside the hearing of the jurors. When the challenges for cause arecompleted, the clerk shall provide a list of the jurors remaining, and eachside, beginning with the plaintiff, shall indicate thereon its peremptorychallenge to one juror at a time in regular turn until all peremptorychallenges are exhausted or waived. The clerk shall then call the remainingjurors, or so many of them as shall be necessary to constitute the jury,including any alternate jurors, and the persons whose names are so called shallconstitute the jury. If alternate jurors have been selected, the last jurorscalled shall be the alternates, unless otherwise ordered by the court prior tovoir dire.

(g)(3) In courts using lists ofprospective jurors generated in random order by computer, the clerk may callthe jurors in that random order.

(h)Oath of jury. As soon as the jury is selectedan oath must be administered to the jurors, in substance, that they and each ofthem will well and truly try the matter in issue between the parties, andrender a true verdict according to the evidence and the instructions of thecourt.

(i)Proceedings when juror discharged. If, after impanelingthe jury and before verdict, a juror becomes unable or disqualified to performthe duties of a juror and there is no alternate juror, the parties may agree toproceed with the other jurors, or to swear a new juror and commence the trialanew. If the parties do not so agree the court shall discharge the jury and thecase shall be tried with a new jury.

(j)Questions by jurors. A judge may invite jurors tosubmit written questions to a witness as provided in this section.

(j)(1) If the judge permitsjurors to submit questions, the judge shall control the process to ensure thejury maintains its role as the impartial finder of fact and does not become aninvestigative body. The judge may disallow any question from a juror and maydiscontinue questions from jurors at any time.

(j)(2) If the judge permitsjurors to submit questions, the judge should advise the jurors that they maywrite the question as it occurs to them and submit the question to the bailifffor transmittal to the judge. The judge should advise the jurors that somequestions might not be allowed.

(j)(3) The judge shall review thequestion with counsel and unrepresented parties and rule upon any objection tothe question. The judge may disallow a question even though no objection ismade. The judge shall preserve the written question in the court file. If thequestion is allowed, the judge shall ask the question or permit counsel or anunrepresented party to ask it. The question may be rephrased into proper form.The judge shall allow counsel and unrepresented parties to examine the witnessafter the juror's question.

(k)View by jury. When in the opinion of the courtit is proper for the jury to have a view of the property which is the subjectof litigation, or of the place in which any material fact occurred, it mayorder them to be conducted in a body under the charge of an officer to theplace, which shall be shown to them by some person appointed by the court forthat purpose. While the jury are thus absent no person other than the person soappointed shall speak to them on any subject connected with the trial.

(l)Communication with jurors. There shall be no off-the-recordcommunication between jurors and lawyers, parties, witnesses or persons actingon their behalf. Jurors shall not communicate with any person regarding asubject of the trial. Jurors may communicate with court personnel and amongthemselves about topics other than a subject of the trial. It is the duty ofjurors not to form or express an opinion regarding a subject of the trialexcept during deliberation. The judge shall so admonish the jury at the beginningof trial and remind them as appropriate.

(m)Deliberation of jury. When the case is finallysubmitted to the jury they may decide in court or retire for deliberation. Ifthey retire they must be kept together in some convenient place under charge ofan officer until they agree upon a verdict or are discharged, unless otherwiseordered by the court. Unless by order of the court, the officer having chargeof them must not make or allow to be made any communication to them withrespect to the action, except to ask them if they have agreed upon theirverdict, and the officer must not, before the verdict is rendered, communicateto any person the state of deliberations or the verdict agreed upon.

(n)Exhibits taken by jury; notes. Upon retiring fordeliberation the jury may take with them the instructions of the court and allexhibits which have been received as evidence in the cause, except exhibitsthat should not, in the opinion of the court, be in the possession of the jury,such as exhibits of unusual size, weapons or contraband. The court shall permitthe jury to view exhibits upon request. Jurors are entitled to take notesduring the trial and to have those notes with them during deliberations. Asnecessary, the court shall provide jurors with writing materials and instructthe jury on taking and using notes.

(o)Additional instructions of jury. After the jury haveretired for deliberation, if there is a disagreement among them as to any partof the testimony, or if they desire to be informed on any point of law arisingin the cause, they may require the officer to conduct them into court. Upontheir being brought into court the information required must be given in thepresence of, or after notice to, the parties or counsel. Such information mustbe given in writing or stated on the record.

(p)New trial when no verdict given. If a jury isdischarged or prevented from giving a verdict for any reason, the action shallbe tried anew.

(q)Court deemed in session pending verdict; verdict may be sealed.While the jury is absent the court may be adjourned from time to time inrespect to other business, but it shall be open for every purpose connectedwith the cause submitted to the jury, until a verdict is rendered or the jurydischarged. The court may direct the jury to bring in a sealed verdict at theopening of the court, in case of an agreement during a recess or adjournmentfor the day.

(r)Declaration of verdict. When the jury or three-fourthsof them, or such other number as may have been agreed upon by the partiespursuant to Rule 48, have agreed upon a verdict they must be conducted intocourt, their names called by the clerk, and the verdict rendered by theirforeperson; the verdict must be in writing, signed by the foreperson, and mustbe read by the clerk to the jury, and the inquiry made whether it is theirverdict. Either party may require the jury to be polled, which shall be done bythe court or clerk asking each juror if it is the juror's verdict. If, uponsuch inquiry or polling there is an insufficient number of jurors agreeingtherewith, the jury must be sent out again; otherwise the verdict is completeand the jury shall be discharged from the cause.

(s)Correction of verdict. If the verdict rendered isinformal or insufficient, it may be corrected by the jury under the advice ofthe court, or the jury may be sent out again.

Advisory Committee Notes