Yes, you have to answer. If you refuse, the judge may possibly hold you in contempt of court - or, more likely, they'll just exclude you from the jury. Note that this is a duplicate thread - this question was already asked and answered here: http://www.avvo.com/legal-answers/i-received-a-jury-summons-could-not-believe-the-in-1114960.html
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I agree with Mr. Bodzin.
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Yes you have to answer, this is to ensure the parties place as fair and impartial a jury as possible to hear the case. If you refuse, you can be held in contempt and/or bounced off the jury pool and placed in another jury pool. It is your responsibility to participate, otherwise the system breaks down and we will lose the right to a jury of our peers to hear important criminal and civil cases! You need to do your part. If you are uncomfortable answering a personal question in front of the court staff and jury pool, the judge will usually offer to allow you to answer in chambers with all counsel present. Try this if it is too personal a question for you?
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Pursuant to 28 U.S. Code Section 1864, the questionnaire will be returned to you once with further instructions to complete and return the form. If you still refuse to complete the form, you may be summoned to appear in person and at your own expense to complete the form. If you refuse the summons, an order to show cause as to why you should not be held in contempt may be issued. Any person who fails to appear pursuant to such order or who fails to show good cause for not completing the questionnaire may be fined not more than $100.00 and/or held in jail for three (3) days. Any person who willfully makes false statements to avoid or secure service may also be fined or jailed in likewise terms.
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