Summons For Jury Duty, But I’m Not A Citizen. How Did They Get My Name And Address?

in #life4 years ago (edited)

Hi Everyone,

I’m a little confused and concerned with the Court Summons I received in the mail yesterday, informing me that I need to attend Jury Duty in July. I know this is a standard requirement that people dread receiving in the mail, however as I am a Permanent Resident (10-year Green Card Holder) I am not legally permitted to be a Juror, only citizens of the United States of America are.

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I also learnt that you cannot simply throw the postcard away and forget about it, as you only have 10 days to respond or a Bench Warrant is issued by a Judge for you to appear in court. So, the court have sent me a summons for a service I cannot complete, and now I must sort their error out, so I am not in trouble with the court! How is that fair!?! If the court did their job correctly once, I would not have received this summons. The court would have sent one summons accurately, now they must delete all my details and reissue a summons to some other poor individual, who hopefully is a citizen.

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I tried calling the phone number on the postcard I had received to clear thing up…. obviously as this is a government run Helpline, no one answered, how completely Unhelpful! And the automated voice said to call back later, no option to speak to anyone in person, or even leave a message to have someone call me back.
So naturally my first reaction was confusion; ‘Am I wrong and non-citizens are required to carry out Jury Duty?’ a quick google search told me a residing No. Only USA Citizens can do Jury Duty.

But this raised my concerns as to how the Court got my details? (Full name and address) As I am not a citizen I am not legally allowed to vote; therefore, I cannot register to vote, therefore the voting registry list was not used to obtain my details.

So how did they get my name and address?

I read that DMV records can at times be used; again, not accurate as the DMV know I’m not a citizen, which is why my Driving License is only ever issued for a couple of years, and on renewing it, I must go in to the DMV in person so they can make a copy of my Green Card for my file and only then issue a new license to me. So, my details in the DMV database would show I’m a Permanent Resident and unable to do Jury Duty.
I was concerned now with who is passing on my personal details, which is a breach of data protection laws, so I visited the website stated on the postcard I received.

I am asked to take a questionnaire. But again, alarm bells start ringing in my head as I read “The electronic questionnaire must be filled out and completed and replaces the Juror Affidavit Questionnaire you would have received by mail”. I have never received any questionnaire ever! So that statement is complete fabrication and untrue.

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I tried calling again to speak to a real person to straighten this mess out, again no luck! So, I decided to take the questionnaire. One of the questions asked if I am a USA Citizen, I answered ‘NO’. It then asked me to state which country I am a citizen of, so I selected United Kingdom and finished completing the questions. At the end it told me to print the 3 pages off, and mail them to the address at the bottom of the last page. I noticed how the postcard that started all of this didn’t require a postage stamp, but now I will need one to mail this questionnaire back to them. Another question arose to me; Why can we not submit it online? I mean I completed it online, on the Court’s web-page. Why does it require printing and snail mail? Automatic submission once completing the questionnaire online would seem a more appropriate and fast means of getting the completed questionnaire back, especially as it’s so ‘Time-sensitive’ you are only allowed 10 days for the mail to reach the court.
But at the same time, none of this makes any real sense to me, so okay, I’ll print and mail it. But this raised another question; How do you guarantee delivery of a piece of mail put in the regular post. No recorded delivery just a postage stamp and trust in the USPS. But the Court states you have only 10 days from delivery to respond, and 10 days to send in your completed questionnaire before they act against you…. how do they know if it got to me in the first place?
I will put my completed questionnaire in the mail and keep you all posted as to what, if anything happens next. But this has raised some interesting questions about how our information is passed around (accurately or not) and why the public are being asked to go out of their way to fix errors caused by the courts, who are never reprimanded for their errors. And if you don’t fix their error, you will have legal problems to then sort out instead! Oh, and not to forget, if I make an error on the questionnaire, I can be taken to court, fined and even face jail time for it. So, does the person who sent me this summons face an investigation for their mistake, have their wages deducted for their error and face jail time if they persist in these errors? I highly doubt it.

In conclusion; I guess the public cannot make errors, only the courts can. And, I am still wondering how my personal information was passed on to them, but not my immigration status! Which is a vital piece of information they should be aware of from the start.

Thanks for reading my first rant-post. Sometimes you just have to get whats bugging you off your chest to feel more relaxed.

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I would bet it is the DMV's fault... someone forgot to check a box or something and your info was automatically submitted...

Probably!
I just find it stupid that I am unable to contact someone directly to tell them of this error. I was also shocked to discover if you don't do anything for 10 days a bench warrant is issued for you, I mean Whoah there cowboy! A Warrant!!?? Jezzzz they are mean!!

Similarly my husband (also a permanent resident) received a ballot in the mail. When he got his liscense they just assumed he was a citizen. So we had to call to have him removed from the voting registrar. It is an issue. One because such things cause problems regarding accusations of illegal voting but two because it could potentially come up if he or you applies for citizenship. Super crappy.

Oh My! I thought you had to actually register yourself to vote. What a nightmare!
I hope its all sorted for you guys now. I'm going to call tomorrow and check Im not on a voting registry by accident now.
Thanks for the heads up!

This happened to us like 10 years ago, so at least he isn’t registered! ☺️ Good luck with getting through the bureaucracy

Thanks! (Feel I need help LOL)

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