Jury Duty Information

Berrien County Courthouse
811 Port Street, St. Joseph

Phone: Jury Hotline (269) 982-0392 or (888) 323-5879 (toll free)
Fax: 269-982-8643
Email: Jury Clerk


If you have been called to serve as a juror, nothing a citizen can be asked to do is more important. You will help to decide what happens to the liberty or property of other people. You will want to do your best to assure that the jury on which you sit returns a fair and impartial verdict.

In case you have never been a juror before you may have questions about what happens in the courtroom and about your role as a juror. Many Frequently Asked Questions as well as assistance in completing your Juror Qualification Questionnaire are listed on this site. If your questions are not answered on our website you may e-mail the Jury Clerk .

To reach the Courthouse from:

Buchanan, Galien or Niles - (269) 684-5274
Three Oaks, New Buffalo, Lakeside or Union Pier - 756-9571 

How jurors are chosen:

  • Driver's licenses or State Identification cards (provided by the Secretary of States office)
  • Names are chosen at random
  • Qualifications of a juror (age, citizenship, etc.)
  • Jurors who are qualified to serve must call the Jury Hotline at (269) 982-0392 or (888) 323-5879 (toll free) after 5:30 PM each night of their week of service to see if their candidate number is required to report the following morning.

Acceptable reasons for having your jury service deferred or excused:

  • You have served within the last 12 months.
  • You are over 70 years of age and choose not to serve.
  • You have a disabling medical problem, which must be verified by a physician's letter or disability certificate.
  • If you are a nursing mother, you must submit verification from your pediatrician.
  • If you have moved out of Berrien County, please submit proof of your new address.
  • If you are a student, please provide proof of enrollment for the term for which you are on-call.
  • If you are in the military, please provide proof of your enlistment.
  • If you are not a United States Citizen please provide proof of citizenship for the country you are a citizen of.
  • Felony Conviction

Directions: Courthouse in St. Joseph: LINK TO MAP
(take the elevator to the second level; turn right upon exiting the elevator and watch the signs for the Jury Assembly Room.)

South County Courthouse in Niles: LINK to MAP
(upon entering the building, go to the District Court counter. There will be a sign-in sheet and you will then be directed to the appropriate waiting area.)
Directions to South County Courthouse: 983-7111 ext. 6010

Fees paid:

  • First Half day $12.50 (if excused before 1:00 PM)
  • First Full day $25.00
  • Returning Half day $20.00 (if excused before 1:00 PM)
  • Returning Full day $40.00
  • After 5:30 pm (any day) $10.00
  • Mileage $0.54 cents per mile
  • Notification to employer available

(Fees paid subject to change. April 2013.)

Parking and Building Security:

  • Parking available in lots on the west side of Courthouse as well as across from the Sheriff's Department in St. Joseph, Michigan.
  • Parking is available to Niles panels in the lots surrounding the South County Building in Niles, Michigan.
  • To provide for the safety of all visitors and employees who use the Berrien County Courthouse, all individuals entering the courthouse will pass through metal detectors and are subject to search. Please be sure to allow extra time to pass through security.
  • NO CELL PHONES, TABLETS OR OTHER ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION DEVICES ARE ALLOWED.

Dress Policy:

  • Use good judgment and dress conservatively. (Slacks and shirt; skirt and blouse, dress or jeans in good condition... shorts or tank tops are inappropriate)  Please consider dressing in layers as jury service will involve several rooms throughout the building and temperatures may vary greatly.
  • Be aware that there are frequent breaks throughout the day for selected jurors.  It may be a good idea to bring a book or something to occupy your time.

Jury Summons

If you have received a jury summons you have been selected for service as a juror with the Berrien County Trial Court.  You have already been assigned to a week of service as shown on the summons.  Please complete and return the questionnaire portion (lower portion) of this document and return as soon as possible.  Hold on to the summons as all pertinent information and instructions required for jury service are on the form or included in the instructions on the reverse side.

When your week of service arrives, please follow the instructions on the reverse side of your summons.  It is important that you call in every night of your assigned week to see if you are needed the following day.  In the event of an emergency or severe weather, please call the jury hotline- if there is a cancellation or change the hotline will be updated immediately.  

 


 
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Berrien County Courthouse
811 Port Street, St. Joseph, MI 49085
Berrien County Administration Center
701 Main Street, St. Joseph, MI 49085
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Last Updated 4/22/2016   
Copyright 2016 Berrien County. All Rights Reserved.

General Telephone: (269) 983-7111
From Niles, Buchanan, Galien: (269) 684-5274
From Three Oaks, New Buffalo, Lakeside, Union Pier: (269) 756-9571

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