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Category: Legal
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I need help. I live in Mercer Island, County, WA. I was

Customer Question

I need help. I live in Mercer Island, King County, WA.
I was called for jury duty in December 2013. I was a professor at the University of Washington and was teaching and I just postponed the date to December 2014.
I retired from UW and then went to HK from Aug 2014-Dec 2014. Hence I was out of the country and thought to postpone to November 2015.
Redmond, King county, WA also called me for jury duty in November 2014 and I told them that I am in Hong Kong. They were going to call me again and it was not rescheduled.
Now I have to report on November 23, 2015.
Unfortunately, I have paid non-refundable cruise travel with my wife to South Africa leaving on Oct 26 and coming back on November 28. I told Jury office in writing that I am available on November 30. They said that they can not postpone it or exempt me.
I also then wrote that I can do it anytime from now till Oct 23.
I want to serve.
Please help and let me know what are my options.
Many many thanks!
Kailash C. Kapur (###) ###-####
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Good morning,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

Under WA state rules and specifically King County jury rules, your jury duty obligation can be postponed (deferred) one or two times for up to one year each time. You must postpone your service prior to your current report date. You have postponed your jury duty two times already and that is the reason that you were denied a third request for postponement.

However, there is another route to avoiding the need to appear for jury duty in late November. Under the rules of the county, you may now seek an exemption. Exemptions are not automatic as are the postponements but they have the same effect. Under the exemption rules, an exemption will only be granted upon a showing of undue hardship.

Undue hardship means more than inconvenience or difficulty serving. It means circumstances that make it truly unfair for you to serve, such that someone else should serve in your place. The fact that you have spent thousands of dollars on a planned trip that may neither be postponed or cancelled without significant financial loss to you---and presuming that you can show that the reservations and payment were made prior to you being notified of this latest jury duty appearance date, then you should not have any trouble getting the exemption.

You will need to gather up all of your trip documentation showing that the trip was already planned and paid for, that it is non-cancelable and non-refundable if you miss the trip, and the amount of money that you will lose if forced to appear for jury duty. Take all of this documentation along with your written request for an exemption to the Jury office located at the King County Courthouse to apply for the exemption. Call the Jury Services number at(###) ###-####for the physical room number for the Jury Services Office.

In the unlikely event that the jury office will not grant you an exemption, you will need to have a local attorney file a motion with the court on your behalf seeking an exemption order from a judge.

You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.

Please remember to rate my service to you so that I can be compensated for helping you. Thank you in advance.

I wish you and yours the best in 2015,