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Frequently Asked Questions
Does my employer have to pay my wage while I am serving?
Your employer is not required by law to pay you while you are serving. You should check with your employer’s personnel or human resource department concerning your company’s wage policy while serving as a juror.
If my laptop has a presentation on it; can I connect to the evidence distribution system in the courtrooms?
Yes. Each counsel table has 1 VGA input per table. An additional VGA input is also available on the podium.
- Please test your laptop prior to your court date to ensure that it is able to push video to an external source. Most laptops have this feature built-in, but others require additional software to achieve this result.
How do I get a surety bond released?
This is between the surety company and the attorney, the court does not get involved. Counsel might mail a copy of the Stipulation for Dismissal, sometime this will satisfy a surety company. A Certificate of Satisfaction or a Judgment Roll (ordered through the intake section) may need to be mailed to the surety company to release the bond. A motion with a proposed order may be filed - stating the case is closed and the surety company is no longer liable. The attorney must first find out what the surety company requirements are before they will release a bond.
What are the clerk's office hours?
Monday-Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM (except for legal holidays)
How do I get notified to appear for service?
Summons for jury service are sent via first-class mail. Petit jurors in all divisions receive instructions with their summons concerning how and when to call the Court’s Automated Jury Information System, a/k/a AJIS for reporting instructions. Summoned jurors for grand jury service however, do not call in before reporting for selection. They report on the time and date indicated on their summons.
What is the Court's Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Program?
In 2005, the Board of Judges for the Western District of Pennsylvania approved Local Civil Rule of Court 16.2 that requires parties involved in all civil actions (except social security cases and cases that involve prisoners) to agree upon a form of ADR as part of the litigation process.
Is there Internet Access available in the courtroom?
Yes. Internet access is available in the courtrooms.
What counties are included in each division for purposes of district court case assignment, venue and petit jury service?
What is needed to file a civil complaint?
(1) An original copy of the signed complaint.
(2) A completed JS-44 Civil Cover Sheet, as modified by the Western District of Pennsylvania.
(3) A $400 Filing Fee.
Where did you get my name for jury service?
Every two years prospective jurors are selected randomly from the voter registration lists in the respective counties within the court’s jurisdiction and their names are put into what is known as the divisional "Master Jury Wheel.” After the creation of the Master Jury Wheel prospective jurors are sent a juror qualification questionnaire. This questionnaire must be completed and returned to the court to determine if the juror is qualified for jury service. Those individuals who "qualify" for service may eventually be summoned to report for service.