Photo of line of jurors being sworn in

Jury service is essential to the administration of justice and considered one of the most important duties you can perform as a U.S. citizen. Our mission in the San Mateo County Superior Court is to work with and for each other to achieve justice and that includes citizens like you. Your time is valuable and I understand that performing jury service may be an inconvenience or mean making a sacrifice. On behalf of our judiciary and court staff, I sincerely thank you for your service to the San Mateo County community.

~ Rodina M. Catalano, Court Executive Officer and Jury Commissioner

Online Pre-Reporting Instructions

Using your group number, you can access pre-reporting instructions about your potential juror service. Please note that the reporting instructions are updated each business day at 6:00 p.m. with juror assignments for the next business day. Follow up instructions for jurors placed on telephone standby are posted at 11:15 a.m. unless instructed differently.

Jury Duty is one of the most important duties you can do as a citizen of the United States. It is essential to uphold the administration of justice around the country. The Jury for San Mateo County takes the list of active registered voters in the area, which is then given to the Jury Commissioner, who will then select a jury off the list.

What Does A Jury Member Do?

A member of the Jury is present in all court hearings and listens to evidence presented from both sides to create an informed decision based on them. In a criminal case, the Jury then collectively decides on whether the defendant is “guilty” or “not guilty” and “liable” or “not liable” in a civil case.

However, a jury is not all-powerful. A judge still reigns supreme. For example, the Jury is provided with access to evidence that the judge approves. In essence, the Jury looks at the facts and then concludes. The judge also presents them with a report on what principles or legalities must be considered when weighing all the facts.

After the Jury has made a decision, it is up to the judge to sentence the defendant in the end.

Can I Still Get Selected For Jury Duty If I’ve Canceled My Vote?

Yes! Canceling your vote has no effect on your Jury summon. All active voters are considered alongside licensed drivers from the DMV are also taken into account when a jury is selected by the Jury Services Division and the Commissioner.

Getting Multiple Jury Summons in San Mateo County:

If your name has been registered differently in the DMV than the CVRU (County Voter Registration Unit), you will receive multiple notices. Here’s what you need to fix that:

  • Make a new voter registration form with your name written exactly as the one printed on your license.
  • Submit the form to the San Mateo County Registration & Elections Division at 40 Tower Road, San Mateo

Note: You are also able to complete this entire process online here.

Jury Duty Amidst the Pandemic – Safety and Precautions:

If you’ve been selected for Jury Duty amongst the COVID-19 pandemic, then there are some safety and precautions that you must follow. Firstly, those reporting to the Redwood City Courthouse must maintain social distancing and wear face masks. 

You will then be escorted to a tent where your attendance will be registered, and a simple health screening process alongside a self-report will be taken. Those who are suffering from any major health problems may also be excused from duty.

The court executive officer will also ensure that all safety precautions are taken inside the courtroom, with hand sanitizers being presented to all members present there. Moreover, a smaller group of jurors will be brought into the report simultaneously, thereby reducing the number of large crowds.

Is Jury Duty Safe In The Pandemic?

The San Mateo County has gone through many strides to ensure that the due process of law remains as efficient as possible. As such, jurors’ safety is always taken into consideration, and proper policies have been implemented throughout every courtroom to ensure that every member is as comfortable and as safe as possible. So, yes, it is safe.

Conclusion

Fulfilling your duty as a juror is an integral part of being a citizen of the United States. A jury plays a great role in upholding the judicial system of the country. Moreover, the county of San Mateo has ensured that its community remains safe when fulfilling its duty and that the writ of law is exercised smoothly.