So you’ve been picked for a jury and don’t want to serve.

If you want to know how to fake your way out of jury duty, you need to hit the back button. The reality is that most people who get called for jury duty won’t get picked. If you do get picked, most juries only last a couple of days. If you are a believer in America then you have to suck it up and serve on a jury because that’s part of our system. You may not like it, but you take the bad with the good. Also, someone’s life hangs in the balance so you should give them a fair shake.

All that said, don’t freak out if you are called for jury duty and “can’t” do it. If you are a single mother and have nobody to help you with the kids, you’ll likely be excused. If you run a company and it’s essential that you be there, you’ll likely be excused. If you can show that your family will suffer serious financial harm if you miss too much work, you’ll likely be excused. If you are a student and would have to miss a ton of class (not a couple of days for any of these people), if you have a vacation planned, if you are taking care of a sick relative, if you are running for public office, if you know any of the lawyers or parties involved, if you have a serious medical condition, if you are a new mother who is breast feeding or if you are famous, you probably won’t get picked.

Lawyers and scientists tend to not get picked because some attorneys don’t want those who know the law or how to examine evidence to have too much influence.

Beyond that, it’s your civic duty, so stop whining about it. If you think that you can show up and act weird, biased, etc. and just get out of it, you are fooling yourself. The Judges deal with this crap every time they have to pick a jury and they’ll gladly keep you for a couple of days in response to your lies. There is a difference between saying you can’t serve on a murder trial because you don’t believe in the death penalty and pretending you are nuts or can’t be impartial.

It may be a nuisance, but it’s your civic duty (sure beats mandatory military service) and it can actually be interesting. So just go and serve and do your best. You’d want good people to do the same for you.