Jury service is a necessary civic duty, required by law. The goal of the jury staff is to summons qualified jurors made up of a fair cross section of the community, working individuals, retirees, members of different sexes as well as social backgrounds, to constitute a legal jury for the civil and criminal courts of Walton County.
Jurors are currently selected at random from a list provided by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. The list, or venire, is made up of qualified motorists 18 years of age or older or individuals 18 years of age or older who hold Florida identification cards. Jurors are generally summoned 4 weeks prior to jury duty.
Length of Service
Jury Service is subject to the needs of the Court. Please come to Jury Service prepared to serve a minimum of one to two days. Service can vary depending on the type of case and the days served may not be consecutive.
Please dress appropriately. No shorts, miniskirts, or tank tops allowed.
Being Excused from Jury Duty
All persons who are summoned to serve as jurors must attend unless they have been excused by the court. Attendance is essential to the fair administration of justice. People who fail to respond to a jury summons without being properly excused can be fined up to $100 and in addition, held in contempt of court.
Section 40.013 of the Florida Statutes states the reasons a person may be excused from jury service. Two of the categories are "Optional Exemption" and "Mandatory Disqualified Exemption". You must be excused if you are listed in one of the mandatory categories:
Mandatory - Disqualifications
- Convicted felon and civil rights have not been restored.
- Currently under prosecution for a crime.
- No longer reside in Walton County.
Optional Exemption - Excused automatically upon request
- Expectant Mother.
- 70 years of age or older.
- Parent not employed full time and have the care and custody of a child under 6 years of age.
- Person who was previously summoned and served as a prospective juror in Walton County, within one (1) year.
- Take care of a person who is incapacitated mentally or physically.
- Full-time federal, state or local law enforcement officer or investigator employed by a law enforcement agency.
Any other reasons submitted for excusal can ONLY BE EXCUSED BY THE JUDGE.
Compensation for Jury Duty
Juror compensation is set by Florida Law. If an individual continues to receive regular wages while serving as a juror, then the State will not compensate that person for the first 3 days of service. If an individual is unemployed, self-employed or someone who does not receive regular wages from the employer, then that person would be entitled to $15 per day (flat rate with no separate amount for mileage) for the first 3 days of service. Furthermore, any juror who serves beyond 3 days will receive $30 per day for the 4th day and any additional days. Approximately 15 days after completion of your jury service, a check will be mailed to you. Before reporting, check with your employer to see if you are paid your regular wages during jury service.
If you are a person with a disability who needs any accommodation in order to participate in this proceeding, you are entitled, at no cost to you, to the provision of certain assistance. Please contact:
Court Administration, ADA Liaison
571 Highway 90 East
DeFuniak Springs, Florida 32433
Phone (850)595-4400 Fax (850) 595-0360
at least 7 days before your scheduled court appearance, or immediately upon receiving this notification if the time before the scheduled appearance is less than 7 days; if you are hearing or voice impaired, call 711.