How to get a note from doctor to get out of jury duty

Updated February 21, 2017

Jury duty is not only compulsory, it's also your responsibility as an American citizen. The United States Constitution promises the right to a jury trial, and the court system needs citizens to make that happen. Sometimes, though, jury duty simply doesn't work for a person. If you're too sick or have a medical condition that makes jury duty impossible, get a doctor's note and fill out the appropriate forms that will excuse you from jury duty.

Read the instructions on the letter calling you to jury duty. It will explain your state's procedure for submitting a doctor's note.

Call your doctor. Both long-term physical and mental conditions can excuse you from jury duty. Conditions such as severe depression, nerve pain and frequent urination can be cited by a doctor as a reason to forgo jury duty.

Ask your doctor for a note exempting you from jury duty. It should explain your condition, that it isn't likely to change in the next year and that the doctor believes you should be excused from jury duty.

Return the note to the court by the method requested in the letter. Most likely, you'll have to fill out a form and send the doctor's note back to the court with the form.


Failure to appear for jury duty without cause can come with a penalty of jail time, fines or community service.

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About the Author

Melly Parker has been writing since 2007, focusing on health, business, technology and home improvement. She has also worked as a teacher and a bioassay laboratory technician. Parker now serves as a marketing specialist at one of the largest mobile app developers in the world. She holds a Master of Science in English.