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How to survive the duty of the jury without losing your mind



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If you serve as a jury, you'll spend a lot of time waiting. Here are our top tech tips for survival.


Getty Images / Jeff Greenberg

The selection for the Duty of the Jury is an important responsibility – some even consider it a privilege – but it can also evoke a range of feelings . Civic duty! $ 12.50 a day! Long lines! Expensive parking!

Jury Duty is something that many of us will eventually join. And whichever side of the camp you fall, I can guarantee you one thing: you will wait a long time.

I have recently served two weeks and there are a few things I would have thought about before. I wish I had thought of bringing technology with me from day one. Continue reading for my top tech tips on surviving the jury's life (or rather, the long wait involved).

Note: These tips specifically refer to the time you spent in the waiting areas of the Jury Pool before you were appointed juror for a lawsuit. Different rules apply to the use of technology when you are waiting in a courtroom for the selection of a jury (voir dire) or active as a juror in a lawsuit. Contact your local jury administration team for specific technology policies and procedures in your area.

How To Pack Up For The Jury

Think carefully about what you want to take with you before you reach the courthouse on the first day. You do not want to take much with you because space is tight, but a few important things can make waiting much easier.

I recommend the following:

  • A portable battery – You probably will not be near a power outlet. This is useful if you have a device with a poor battery life that you would rather charge (or if you wait longer than expected at the end). Here are our favorites for Android and for iPhone .
  • Noise Canceling Headphones – You can still hear the speaker messages, but you will be able to focus a bit better, especially when trying to work. Learn about the best noise canceling headphones.
  • A Hotspot – The courthouse had Wi-Fi (and probably yours), but was not reliable, especially in the main waiting room. Discover the best hotspots.
  • Snacks – In our "Juror Lounge" was a vending machine, a mini fridge, a microwave and a fountain. Consider bringing your own snacks and lunches if you want to eat on a schedule – or just avoid the hypnotic pull of the machine (Oooh, Twix …). Make sure you bring an insulated lunch box to keep your food cool, especially when no fridge is available.
  • A Reusable Water Bottle – There should be water fountains available so you can refill a reusable container with ease.

These are just suggestions, of course, but they changed my life during these longer waiting times.

How to park for the jury's duty

If you live in an area with reliable public transport, this is the best way to get the jury's duty. I happen to live in an area with a decent bus system, but it's not that easy to reach from my neighborhood, so I drove instead. Let me tell you – the parking was a total mess.

Here are some suggestions for my passengers:

  • Use an app like Smarty Park to find free seats in nearby parking garages.
  • Take a photo or somehow make a note of where you parked (we all had) the experience of forgetting where we parked and wandering aimlessly by pressing the lock button on our car and on a remote "Beep" hopes jurors (I've received a $ 1 discount – I do not know much, but hey, it's something – when I parked in a specific garage.)

If public transport is not an option and driving a car is not sounds good, consider a joint Lyft / Uber pool to save money and reduce the inconvenience of parking. I wish I had done that.

Waiting During Jury Appearance

As Tom Petty said, "Waiting is the hardest part." You've packed your gear, parked (hopefully in a location that will not cost you a fortune) and you hang around in the crowded waiting room. Take a seat and the noise-canceling headphones and get down to business. I have written a lot about it from one of these places.

Do you have your own technical proposal on how to survive jury duty? Let me know below.


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