How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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December 22, 2006



Like all good lobbyists, I have no doubt Ted has a study that backs that up. No doubt paid for by his clients.


When I've been called for jury duty, I've always been able to get out of it. And I suspect many people that don't want to serve use the same lame excuses I did. Presumably, the people that *want* to be on a jury have a strong motivation to do so. Whether that cuts for or against plaintiffs would depend on the motivation.



Your experience is atypical. In all of the jurisdictions I've practiced, one better have a pretty good reason - not just "I have to work" - to get out of jury duty.

Maybe those people have the motivation of doing what their country needs, while that's not something you're all about? Given your antipathy to the justice system, it's sad to see that someone whose moral compass is clearly so correct in their own mind and who has decided that juries are unfair wouldn't want to right that wrong.


I won't aid or abet a morally-bankrupt system. In any event, how could I possibly be an unbiased juror?

And yes, in Texas, I have been excused from jury duty for a variant of "I have to work".


You clearly don't understand the definition of "unbiased" in this context. Which is not surprising.


Enlighten me...


We are only at the first stage: Ted makes a sweeping assertion. Stage Two is annoyance that you would dare to question him. Stage Three is narrowing the original assertion. After that you move into anger, denial and stomping out of Legal Underground in a huff while declaring he doesn't know why he bothers to read this blog.

As is usual when I read Ted's First Stage, I think I should pack up and move to wherever he practices. Where I live, nobody wants to empanel a jury around the holidays. The judge and court clerk don't want you clogging up the court's tight calendar with your pre-trial motions, jurors are pissed at both sides, and the idea that you could precisely plan the jury to go to verdict "the week around Christmas" says that either plaintiffs' lawyers are devilishly smart or defense lawyers are really really stupid.

Matt - in my jurisdiction, "I have to work" is a hardship if your employer refuses to compensate you for jury duty, such that it would be a financial burden to you to serve on the jury.


If you can show a financial burden, then perhaps you can get it around here. But it will have to be a pretty high standard for our judges.


In San Francisco County, the judges have a list of most of the large employers in the area, and how much jury duty they do or don't pay for. So if Company X pays for two weeks, and a Company X employee pleads hardship, they are going to have a little problem. It also depends on the length of the jury service--good luck claiming financial hardship if you're being called for a two-day trial.

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