Saturday, December 16th, 2017
Jury Service

When you are called to be a juror, you become a very important person in our legal system. In the United States, our justice system is based on the belief that a just and fair result in court comes from having disputes settled by our fellow citizens. Very few of us ever have to go to court as plaintiffs or defendants, but when we do, we want good, honest people to listen to the evidence and decide our cases fairly.

Therefore, when we are called to serve on a jury, we have an obligation to our fellow citizens to honor the summons and appear at court. Some cases may be more important than others, but to the parties involved, their case is very important, and they deserve to have it decided by honest and impartial jurors.

As a prospective juror, you will receive a letter from the Court approximately two (2) weeks prior to the date you are to appear. If you are unable to appear on the requested date, please notify the court immediately - in writing -. We will then notify you as to whether or not you will be continued to another date.

If you have been selected as a prospective juror, you will be asked to report to the court at 8:30 a.m. on the date of trial. Also, you will be asked to call the jury service hotline, (419) 734-5152, after 5:30 pm the day before your scheduled jury service to make sure your presence will still be necessary the next day (this is a recording so you will not be able to leave a message).

Please bring your jury summons with you when you appear for jury service, and be sure the address on the summons is correct for the payment of jury service.

As a prospective and/or seated juror you must reside in the territorial jurisdiction of this court. The jury pool is taken from the Ottawa County Board of Elections list of registered electors who reside in Ottawa County, Ohio.

Please come dressed appropriately for juror service. As the temperature in the courtroom may vary, you may want to bring a sweater or jacket with you.

Do not bring children or anyone else with you. You may spend some time waiting. You may want to bring some reading material with you.

If you need proof that you have served as a prospective and/or seated juror for your employer, please visit the Clerk's office.

Eight jurors and one alternate will be selected as the panel of jurors. At the end of the trial, the alternate juror will be dismissed. The other jurors will be sequestered for deliberations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What time do I need to report for jury duty?

You will be required to report for jury service promptly at 8:30 a.m. on the designated date. Most jury trials that take place in the Ottawa County Municipal Court are completed in one (1) day.

Do the cases ever get resolved before trial?

Yes. The parties involved in a case usually try to settle their differences and avoid the time and expense of a trial. Sometimes a case is settled only minutes before the trial begins. Therefore, even though many trials are scheduled each day, some of them will not actually go to trial, so those cases will not need juries. But your time spent waiting to serve is not wasted; your presence encourages settlement. Many of the cases, both civil and criminal, are settled a day or two before the day of trial, therefore eliminating the need for jurors to report for jury service. In an effort to avoid having jurors make unnecessary trips to the Ottawa County Municipal Court, you will be asked to call the jury service hotline, (419) 734-5152, after 5:30 pm the day before your scheduled jury service to make sure your presence will still be necessary the next day.

What do I do in case of sudden illness or emergency?

If you should become ill, or, if there is a death or a grave illness in your family or if a similarly serious problem should arise, you or some responsible person on your behalf must submit a written excuse to the jury coordinator in order to secure an excuse from reporting on the designated date for jury service. Only the judge is authorized to grant this type of excuse from jury service. Please direct all calls to the Jury Coordinator. The telephone number is (419) 732-2871.

I'm going to be out of town the day of the trial – what should I do?

If you know of days during your scheduled term of service when you cannot be present for jury service, as, for example, a business trip or a vacation, you must notify the jury coordinator in writing and secure a temporary excuse from reporting on the designated date. As indicated above, only Judge Hany is authorized to grant this type of temporary excuse from jury service. Please send all correspondence to the Ottawa County Municipal Court, 1860 E. Perry St, Port Clinton, OH 43452. Remember, unless you have been excused from jury service, you must appear.

What do I do with my children when I come in for jury service?

Unfortunately, there are no facilities at the court to keep children occupied, so please make arrangements for your children to be taken care of on your day of jury service. If you are in need of child care, you can contact a child care provider listed in the yellow pages.

Do I get paid for jury service?

Jurors will receive $15.00 for each day they are scheduled for jury duty, regardless of whether or not they are selected to serve as a juror. Further, no provision has been made by the Ohio Legislature for the payment of mileage. Jury fees are paid by the Ottawa County Auditor and will be mailed to you by the Auditor following the completion of jury service.

Does the court provide lunch?

No, but there will be a break for lunch and you may leave the building to get something to eat if you would like.

Hours of Operation
Mon - Fri:
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Phone Numbers
Clerk's Office:
419.734.4143
Assignment Office:
419.732.2871
Probation Department:
419.734.6299
Fax:
419.732.2862
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