The jury selection process differs from state to state and in some states county by county. However, many judges follow similar local rules for selecting jurors. In this Maryland medical malpractice educational video we will discuss help with the jury selection process.
Where Do The Jurors Come From?
The day typically begins with the jury Panel sitting in a large room in the courthouse. This panel is assembled from voter and or motor vehicle rosters for that particular jurisdiction. This means the address listed on your driver’s license or state issued identification card or the address listed through the board of elections is a county (or Baltimore City) in Maryland, you could be called for jury duty in that county.
You and your attorney and the opposing side arrive in the courtroom. The judge may check to determine if there are any preliminary matters or if a settlement has been offered and accepted. If neither of those things are present, the judge may then call for jurors. The number of jurors called will depend on the type of case and the anticipated length of trial.
Can I Decide How Many Jurors I Want?
To be clear, in Maryland civil juries have a minimum of 6 jurors and criminal juries have 12. For the purposes of this education information, we will talk about civil juries.
Many circuit court judges in Maryland ask the jurors prospective questions called voir dire. In other states the attorneys may conduct voir dire directly. The voir dire, or questions are designed to assist the attorneys in selecting which prospective juror would be best to hear the evidence.
Once voir dire has concluded, then the parties take turns selecting through the panel until 6 are selected and accepted by both sides. The judge will then decide how many alternates will be needed. The alternate(s) sits through the entire trial just in case he or she has to be become a juror and this is usually in case of an emergency with one of the original jurors.
The six jurors and alternates are then assembled and given an oath by a court official.
Help With The Jury Selection Process In Maryland?
This was just a brief snapshot into what goes into selecting a Maryland medical malpractice jury. If your case is that far along and you are approaching trial, ask your attorney any specific questions you may have. If you or your baby was injured by a hospital or doctor and you are not sure whether it’s medical malpractice, give us a call 301-850-4832. We answer questions about birth injury and medical malpractice all of the time and we would be happy to talk to you about your experience.
Renee Boston, Esq.
Boston Law Group, LLC
2 Wisconsin Circle, Suite 700
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815