Jury Duty and Courts

Jury trials in Worcester County are conducted in the Dudley, Fitchburg, Milford and Worcester (Central) district courts and Worcester Superior Court. While 85 percent of prospective jurors complete their service in just one day, prospective jurors are advised to set aside three days in case they are impaneled on a trial.

Juror Information Telephone Number
The toll-free Juror Information Telephone Number is: 1-800-THE-JURY (1-800-843-5879). This number is only accessible within Massachusetts. You will immediately be given the option of either speaking with one of our Telephone Operators or navigating a pre-recorded message tree in English and Spanish that will likely answer your questions. This message tree is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while the schedulers are available every business day between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Those who are hearing impaired and have TTY devices can call, toll-free, 1-800-328-3202.

About the Massachusetts Jury System
The framers of the United States Constitution considered both the right to a jury trial and the performance of juror service as sacred and necessary to preserve individual freedom. Juror service was, and still is, viewed as a duty and privilege of citizenship, and as a necessary check against government use of the courts to wrongly convict the innocent.

Trial Juror Service
A trial jury is composed of either 12 jurors plus 2 alternates or 6 jurors plus 1 alternate. It consists of citizens brought together to listen to evidence presented by both the prosecution and defense in the matter of a criminal proceeding, plaintiff or defendant in a civil trial. A trial jury concerns itself only with the issues at hand for a particular trial. During the deliberation process at the end of the trial, the jurors sort out the facts and apply the law as given them by the court. The result of a trial jury’s deliberations is called a verdict: the determination that the defendant’s guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt or not, or a finding for the plaintiff or defendant in a civil case.

The Courts of Worcester County
Directions to the 10 courthouses in Worcester County can be found here.

Grand Juror Service
A grand jury is composed of 23 members who listen to evidence presented by the prosecutor. Its function is to consider this evidence, then decide if it rises to a level sufficient to indict (bring a criminal charge against) a person or corporation. The grand jury does not decide the guilt or innocence of the accused; rather, it decides if there is probable cause to bring the accused to trial.

Federal Juror Service
In Massachusetts, jury summonses are issued by both the Commonwealth for service in the state courts and the Federal government for service in the U.S. District Court. If you find you have been summonsed for juror service at the U.S. District Court and you have questions, you may call 617-748-9082

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