Can you rightfully get summoned to court that is an excessive distance from your home?

My friend just got summoned to court in Philadelphia this summer and we live about an hour outside of Philly. Not only is that very far especially with gas prices these days but she also does not feel comfortable driving in the city where we are from which is much smaller than Philadelphia and she does not feel comfortable driving on the interstate. Can she request to get out of this jury duty and request something that is in our home town? I just think this is outrageous, many people dont even have cars or reliable ones so how do they even expect her to get there?


Just FYI - she never lived in Philly, has always lived an hour away, it is US district court but I dont know how they can expect people to travel that far

2 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Yes, she can be picked for jury duty if she resides in Philadelphia. Since she doesn't reside in Philadelphia any longer....

    From this page:

    "If you are no longer a resident of the City and County of Philadelphia, please indicate your new address in the remarks section. You are not be required to report. "


    If you wish to request a postponement or need to be excused from jury service for an extreme hardship, you must indicate the reason for your request in the remarks section of your summons. You should also indicate a date within the next 4-5 months you will be available to serve. If you are 70 years or older, you are invited to serve, but not required. To be excused, please put your request in the “Remarks” section and return.

    Remember, the completed questionnaire with this information in the remarks section should be returned within five days of receipt to the Jury Selection Commission, 1301 Filbert Street, Room 204, Philadelphia, PA 19107. You may also fax the document to 215-683-7183.

    If you have already completed and returned your questionnaire and find you need to request a postponement, call the Commission at 215-683-7170, and use the interactive voice response system, Option 4, to request your postponement. You will receive step by step instructions.

    When you call the Commission, you should have your nine-digit ID number available. That number appears in a yellow highlighted box on your summons."

    You may check the status of a postponement or hardship request by calling the Commission at 215-683-7170 and choosing Option 4. "


    Federal court is different. I'd really suggest she show up for that one.

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  • 1 decade ago

    It is a Federal Court, they can compel attendance for anyone in the Federal District, which may constitute parts of several states. They have the power to compel attendance just as much as your local courts have and she must appear or a contempt citation can be filed against her.

    She, or her attorney can contest the summons and she may win, but living an hour away will not be considered a hardship unless she is handicapped in some manner.


    Many people drive more than an hour to and from work each day, so the judge will not have much sympathy for that excuse.

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