Serving on a jury is an important civic duty that is bound by certain guidelines, especially regarding communication about the case. In North Carolina, a few recent trials may have been compromised by jurors’ use of social media communication. It is crucial to remember the following restrictions on jury communication in both criminal and civil trials:
- Don’t communicate with any outside parties about the case. There are few exceptions to this rule. For example, if you see an attorney or suspect outside the courtroom, you should avoid talking about the case. Additionally, posting on Facebook or Twitter about the case or the jury’s deliberations can contaminate the entire process of a jury trial and necessitate a retrial.
- Don’t speak to other jurors about the case unless the judge gives you permission to do so. While evidence is still being presented, you may not speak to other jury members about the case outside of the jury room. All communication must be confined to the official deliberation process.
- Don’t do your own research. Though the internet is a great tool for finding out about a variety of subjects, you are not permitted to use it for such purposes while on a jury. You cannot perform outside research about any topics. For your deliberation, you must strictly limit yourself to the information you were given in court.
Restrictions on jury communication preserve the impartiality of the judicial system. They ensure that all jurors receive the same information and that the jury is not tainted by outside input. Additionally, these restrictions keep the trial self-contained instead of encompassing public opinion or outside input.
If your personal injury lawsuit goes to trial, you can feel confident that your attorney from the Law Office of D. Hardison Wood will fight to keep the jury as impartial as possible. To schedule a consultation to discuss the injuries you endured because of another’s carelessness, call (919) 238-4668.
The materials available at this website are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use and access to this website or any of the links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship. The opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the firm or any individual attorney.