In the state of Texas and in the United States, a citizen is guaranteed the right to trial by his peers. This is why the Texas Judicial Council sends out a summons to residents who may potentially become jurors. Unfortunately, the opportunity to perform this important civic duty sometimes is not possible for certain individuals. There are several disqualifying factors that will allow a person to get out of jury duty in the state of Texas.
Keep Off the List of Potential Jurors
You cannot be signed up for jury duty if you do not receive the initial summons. One way to ensure that you are not sent a summons for jury duty in Texas is to make sure you do not make the list of potential jurors. This list is put together by the Texas State Secretary, and it consists of individuals who are registered to vote in Texas, who hold a Texas driver's license or who have a Texas identification card. Avoiding those three things will keep your name from being randomly selected.
Not Meeting Qualifications
If you do receive a summons notice from the Texas Judicial System, it does not guarantee that you have to serve as a juror. You must first meet the requirements of being a juror. To qualify, you must be at least 18 years old and you must be a citizen of the United States of America as well as a resident of the state of Texas. You must meet the requirements to be able to vote, based on the Texas county laws where you reside. Additionally, you must be mentally stable and show positive moral characteristics, and you need to be literate. Anyone who has served her jury duty in Texas for at least six days is not qualified to serve until three months has passed. If you do not meet all of these requirements, you are not eligible to serve as a juror.
Claim an Exemption
Although a person residing in Texas is not disqualified for certain exemptions, he can choose to not perform jury duty. These exemptions include: being over the age of 70; having to take care of a child that is 10 years old or younger during the time of duty; having to attend a class for secondary or higher education; being employed by a legislative department in the government; or being the caretaker for someone who is unable to care for himself. You can get out of jury duty if you meet any of these exemption requirements.
There are other exemptions that may possibly be grounds for dismissing you from jury duty in Texas. You must contact the judge or court in the Texas county where you were summoned to see if you qualify. These exemptions include being physically or mentally unable to to communicate in English, being caused a hardship by performing jury duty, or being scheduled to appear in court on a day that falls on a religious holiday that you observe.
Kelly Whiteford has been writing professionally since 2005, when she first began writing research papers on renewable energy and energy efficiency. She now writes for eHow. Whiteford holds a Bachelor of Arts in marketing from Towson University.