3 Ways to Get Rid of Serving on the Jury

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3 Ways to Get Rid of Serving on the Jury
3 Ways to Get Rid of Serving on the Jury

Serving on the Jury is an exercise in citizenship and is mandatory for everyone who is called. You will be helping to decide whether or not someone is guilty of a crime, and to do that, you will have to sit and listen through the entire process for a whole day or more. If you do not appear when summoned, you may even be fined from 1 to 10 minimum wages (depending on the person's financial conditions) and lose your political rights. Here are some tips to get rid of Jury service.


Method 1 of 3: Recruitment

Get Out of Jury Duty Step 6

Step 1. The presiding judge of the jury can ask local authorities, class and neighborhood associations, associative and cultural entities, educational institutions in general, universities, professional unions and public offices to appoint citizens who meet the legal conditions

Enlistment includes all persons over 18 years of age, and those over 60 may request exemption from service.

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Step 2. Contrary to popular belief, jurors are not chosen for the highest level of education

The criterion is the notorious moral integrity, that is, people with no criminal record and with a clean name in SERASA.

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Step 3. Preference is given to those who are laymen in legal knowledge

This means that, if you are a law student, your chances of being called up are already very small. Some Judges/Prosecutors/Defenders don't like having law students as jurors because they already have some knowledge of the subject and don't fit in as “lay people”.

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Step 4. Civil servants and teachers in general (even from private courses) are often called to serve on the jury

Method 2 of 3: Who Gets Dismissed

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Step 1. Be friends with someone in justice

No, you don't need to ask anyone for a favor. It is provided in the law that persons who have a connection with anyone involved with the jury – the Judge, the Prosecutor, the Defender, the accused – are prohibited from serving. At the beginning of the jury, the judge will ask if there is anyone who fits these hypotheses. Identify yourself and you'll get your waiver.

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Step 2. Be a member of any of the exempt categories

There are some types of work that are automatically excused from serving on the jury. They are: government officials, justice officials, active military, police and public security officials. Other exempt categories are:

  • Housewives with small children. Women who do not exercise public functions and who can prove that, due to domestic obligations, they cannot be absent from the home.
  • Anyone who has served as a juror for a year and asks for a waiver.
  • Those over 60 years old.
  • Upon request:
  • Doctors;
  • Religious confession ministers;
  • Pharmacists;
  • Midwives.
  • Physically incapable. The deaf, blind and other people with disabilities.
  • Those who present a medical certificate when requesting a dispensation from the judge. The health problem must be serious enough for the judge to grant a waiver for fair impediment.
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Step 3. Also know that two members of the same family cannot be on juries at the same time

That includes:

  • Husband and wife;
  • Ascendant and descendant;
  • Father-in-law and son-in-law or daughter-in-law;
  • Brothers and brothers-in-law, during the brother-in-law;
  • Uncle and nephew;
  • Stepfather, stepmother or stepson;
  • People who maintain a stable relationship recognized as a family entity.

Method 3 of 3: Lower Chances of Being Summoned

Step 1. On the day you attend your city's forum, 7 judges will be drawn

Both the prosecutor and the defense can make 3 refusals without explaining why. So, even if your name is drawn, if the defense or prosecuting attorney looks at you and refuses you, you will be dismissed.

  • Show your anger at crime. In Brazil, the only crimes that go to the Jury are crimes against life – murder, suicide aid, abortion. All other crimes are decided by the Judge, who must be impartial. If you show that you already have an opinion formed even before the process starts – saying that “whoever kills must die”, or that “whoever aborts goes to hell”, for example – will get you thrown out of the process.
  • Be radical. Engineers and Japanese descendants are reputed to be too rigid in their judgment. Therefore, the defense usually refuses them.
  • Religion. The adherents of spiritism are known to have a tendency to acquit the defendant, being frequently rejected by the prosecutors.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of women. In certain crimes such as rape followed by death, for example, prosecutors prefer women, who tend to be more shocked and find the defendant guilty. The defense will do everything to not have a single woman on the jury.
  • Appear very knowledgeable on the subject. The aim of lawyers is to make up your mind. If you demonstrate intelligence and logical thinking, you will undoubtedly not be their darling for the jury. This can help you even after you're already serving on the jury, because by demonstrating that you think about facts and evidence and not emotionally and passionately and manipulatively, lawyers won't want to see you there again.
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Step 2. On Judgment Day (in which lawyers choose one by one jurors, just by looking at each other's faces), remember these phrase tips that can throw a bucket of cold water on whoever is interested in choosing you to join the jury:

  • “I'm not going to risk my life and that of my family by prosecuting someone I'm not 100% sure committed the crime. Who can guarantee my safety or that of my family if tomorrow this person crosses my path on the street?”
  • “I was once the victim of a crime, and they were never held responsible. I never settled for it. The court system just doesn't work.”
  • “I have a friend who is a police officer/prosecutor/official public defender. We talked a lot about this type of case. He has very controversial opinions…”
  • “The defendant is the same age as my son/nephew/brother, etc. As my son gave a lot of headaches and is now an adult father of an exemplary family, I believe that the defendant deserves a second chance…”
  • If called in for an interview with the judge, tell him you can tell if a defendant is guilty just by looking at his face.


  • Don't panic. If you've been subpoenaed to appear on the jury, it doesn't mean you're actually going to serve. On the day of the session, a draw will be made among all the people who have been subpoenaed and only seven people will be chosen.
  • Serving on the jury has some advantages. You cannot have your workday discounted and you have preference in public examinations and job promotions, as well as the right to special imprisonment in cases of common crime until the end of the trial.
  • If you are in therapy with a psychologist or psychiatrist, you can ask them to write a letter attesting to your emotional and/or mental instability in order to fully exercise the jury role.


  • When the refusal is motivated by religious, philosophical or political convictions, you may even be dismissed as a juror, but you will have to provide alternative services. They consist of administrative, assistance, philanthropic or productive activities in the Judiciary Branch, the Public Defender's Office, the Public Prosecutor's Office or an entity agreed for these purposes.
  • If you make an excuse or express your opinion to try to get out, don't do anything illegal or exaggerated. Remember that you will be surrounded by police officers and law enforcement personnel, and you may get in trouble for that.
  • Never miss a jury appointment. It is an obligation of every citizen (just like voting), and you can lose your rights and also be fined up to 10 minimum wages.
  • If you are subpoenaed to serve on the Jury once, be prepared: you will be subpoenaed several more times, as the same list of people is maintained throughout the year. Please read this guide carefully and consider the various options for getting rid of the service.
  • If after all, you have to serve on the Jury, do a good job. You will not only be collaborating with the law, but you will be deciding a person's life. So pay attention to the case presented and decide responsibly.

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