Discussion Questions on Jury Administration

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Discuss the various methods used to select state judges.

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Merit selection is a method used to select state judges. It is a non-partisan method of selecting judges where a nominating commission provides names of qualified persons to the Governor. He or she later chooses one person to serve. Nonpartisan elections have no party affiliations listed on the ballot. Partisan elections are elections that the nominees parties are listed on the ballot.

Discuss judicial benefits and problems.

Judicial benefits include life terms for federal positions and in some states. They have a high degree of respect and prestige as well. They are the primary decision makers in the court. However, they can be sanctioned if they deviate from the consensus of the courtroom work group. They also have to master the law procedures and must know how to apply them. They also have to cope with the psychological discomfort that accompanies their new positions.

Discuss courtroom civility and judicial misconduct.

Courtroom civility involves judges, court actions and litigants conducting themselves appropriately so that all parties can afford a fair opportunity to present their case. A judge can also have misconduct when he or she treats jurors, staffs and lawyers poorly. They could have judicial arrogance where they lack dignity and compassion on people. They could also not issue timely decisions hence having misconduct in their roles.

Discuss the revised code of conduct for state and local judges

It involves standards written by the American Bar Association (ABA) to assist judges in the maintenance of the highest standards of judicial and personal conduct. People are advised to refrain from sexual advances and other unwelcome behavior.

Discuss judges as court managers.

The Administrative office of the Courts coordinates and administers operations of federal courts. The judges in these courts take up administrative roles such as statewide jurisdiction for state Supreme Court chief justices. They are also in local jurisdictions as trial judges who are responsible for administering the operations of his or her individual court and act as chief judges who supervise several courts within a judicial district.

Discuss the general duties of trial court administrators. Also, discuss the evaluation of court administrators.

Trial administrators functions are summarizing caseload data, preparing annual reports, troubleshooting and preparing budgets. They prepare and submit periodic reports on activities of the business of the court to the judges. They improve court business methods; engage in procurement, inventory control and allocation of furniture and equipment in the courts. They also provide training for non-judicial personnel.

Discuss jury administration.

It ensures that a jury is properly composed and sustained before and after trials. The elements of the jury system include comfort, jury selection, sequestration, and notorious cases. During selection, there is a compilation of a master jury list to produce a community representative. There is a juror call-in system to allow comfort to wait long hours, which jurors experience. Jurors at times remain in virtual quarantine because of jury appropriation. The administration during this time protects the jury from external interference. Notorious cases involve civil or criminal trials that require attention to jury selection and trial procedures.

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