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Jury Duty

It is not unusual for students residing in Worcester County to be summoned to serve as trial jurors. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has a statewide one-day/one-trial system. Under this system, trial jurors serve either one day or, if selected, one trial. After juror service has been satisfied that juror is disqualified from serving again for a minimum of three years.

Medical students are NOT automatically excused from jury duty. Most jurors called do not have to serve more than 3 days (the majority fulfill this obligation in one day). If you are selected for a jury pool for a longer period of time, you will have the opportunity to explain how this may constitute a hardship to the judge who may or may not excuse you from that trial. Student Affairs can assist students by providing them with a letter of support if needed.

Grand jury or federal jury assignments do not fall under this one-day/ one-trial umbrella. If you received a summons for grand jury or federal jury duty, contact the Student Affairs Office for assistance.

Students should carefully read all materials they receive with their summons to service, which contains helpful information about confirming, postponing, rescheduling or relocating service, and can address many of the most frequently asked questions. Jury duty is an important legal obligation, and those who fail to respond are subject to criminal prosecution.

Students who must miss class in order to fulfill their jury service requirement should notify each of their instructors of the summons and make arrangements to complete any missed work.

If you have any questions about jury duty, including confirming, postponing, rescheduling or limiting your service, contact the Office of the Jury Commissioner (1-800-THE-JURY/1-800-843-5879). Further information can also be found on the Office of Jury Commissioner’s website at

This content is current to the 2021-2022 Student Handbook.