Jury Duty Information

photo of jury box

Jurors are randomly picked by a computer list of registered voters, persons 18 years or older and residents of Erie County. You must be a resident of the court’s jurisdiction to be eligible to serve as a juror. The Sandusky Municipal Court serves the City of Sandusky, Perkins Township and the Villages of Bay View and Castalia.

Generally, your term of service is two months. The number of days you need to be available is four days in that period. Jury Trials usually only last one or two days.

Please completely fill out your juror questionnaire. If you have a problem and /or concern, please list it on the questionnaire. Make sure to provide a daytime phone number. After review of the questionnaires someone will contact you concerning your issue. If you have medical problems making it difficult to serve on jury duty, please completely fill out your questionnaire. Include a note from your doctor explaining why you cannot serve on jury duty. You will be contacted so you know if you are excused. The questionnaires are confidential and are designed to provide the Court with relevant information about you for jury selection.

The phone number for the automated recording is 419-627-5700. You may call after 4:00 P.M. the night before the scheduled trial to see if you need to report. If you still have a question you may call 419-627-5914 from 7 A.M. to 3 P.M. Monday thru Friday.

You will receive thirty dollars ($30.00) for each day you serve. You will receive payment by mail from the Erie County Auditor in approximately 30 days after you have reported to Court or served as a juror.

If you need proof that you have served as a prospective and/or seated juror for your employer, please go to the counter after you have been dismissed. A staff member will prepare documentation for you.

The two types of cases that can be heard by a jury in the Sandusky Municipal Court are:

CRIMINAL: Cases heard are misdemeanors (such as shoplifting, driving under the influence of alcohol, assault, telephone harassment, etc.) The person charged with a crime is called the defendant. The State of Ohio is the plaintiff in criminal cases. In a criminal case all eight (8) jurors must agree upon the same verdict.

CIVIL: The only type of civil case that can be heard in municipal courts is for disputes concerning money or property. The party suing is the Plaintiff and the party being sued is called the Defendant. It is possible to have more than one Plaintiff and/or Defendant.

Municipal courts are limited to $15,000.00 for law suits. A verdict in a civil case requires that three-fourths of the jury agree. This means at least 6 of the 8 jurors must reach a verdict.

Suggestions for Jurors (courtesy of The American Bar Association)

When you receive your jury summons:

  • Tell your employer as soon as possible that you’ve been called to serve.
  • Dress respectfully when you go to the courthouse.
  • Be prepared to fill some down time. Bring something to read.
  • Answer all questions you are asked honestly and completely.
  • If there’s something you don’t understand, ask the judge or other court personnel.

When you sit on a trial:

  • Use only the evidence you are given.
  • Do not do your own "research."
  • Write a note to the judge if you have any questions about the trial.
  • Follow the judge’s instructions. Do not interpret the judge’s conduct as a cue about the case.
  • Respect each other and each other’s opinions.