Idaho Jury Selection

Jury selection refers to a procedure employed to choose the people from among the community using a reasonably random method to serve on a trial jury.  All juries are selected as prescribed by the Uniform Jury Selection and Service Act of Idaho.  For the purpose, jury commission of each county shall compile and maintain a master list consisting of: (a) all voter registration lists of the county (b) additional lists, which includes driver’s license lists; and such other lists as the administrative judge for the judicial district shall designate.  

The names of all prospective jurors on the jury panel present for the trial of an action shall constitute the initial trial jury panel for that action.  Under the direction of the court, the clerk shall then select, at random, sufficient prospective jurors to complete jury selection.  The court, in its discretion and in consideration for the privacy of the jurors, may have the jurors referred to by name or by number, as the court may deem appropriate.

After voir dire examination of each prospective juror or of all prospective jurors, Challenges for cause shall be heard and determined by the court.  The grounds for challenge for cause are as follows:

  • A want of any of the qualifications prescribed by the Idaho Code to render a person competent as a juror.
  • Consanguinity or affinity, within the fourth degree to any party.
  • Standing in the relation of debtor or creditor, guardian and ward, master and servant, employer and clerk, or principal and agent to either party, or being a member of the family of either party, or a partner, or united in business with either party, or surety on any bond or obligation for either party.
  • Having served as a juror or been a witness on a previous trial between the same parties for the same cause of action, or being then a witness or subpoenaed therein.
  • Pecuniary interest on the part of the juror in the outcome of the action or in the main question involved in the action.
  • Having an unqualified opinion or belief as to the merits of the action, or main question involved therein, founded upon knowledge or information of its material facts or of some of them.
  • The existence of a state of mind in the juror evincing enmity or bias to or against either party.

A court may direct that one or more jurors in addition to the regular panel be called and impaneled to sit as jurors.  All jurors shall be drawn in the same manner, shall have the same qualifications, shall be subject to the same examination and challenges, shall take the same oath, and shall have the same functions, powers, facilities, and privileges prior to deliberations.

If the court determines that those jurors removed by lot must be available to replace any jurors who may be excused during deliberations due to death, illness or otherwise as determined by the court, the bailiff, sheriff or other person appointed by the court shall take custody of said jurors until discharged by the court. In the event a deliberating juror is removed, the court shall order the juror discharged and draw the name of an alternate juror who shall then take the discharged juror’s place in the deliberations.

Inside Idaho Jury Selection