Ministry of Justice

Jury Duty

Request an Exemption

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This section provides information about exemptions from jury service.

The Jury Act allows for people to request to be exempted from jury service based on extraordinary circumstances.

Some exemptions are provided for specifically by the law or regulation. If you are 65 years of age and over, you can request an exemption from jury duty, on a one-time basis or permanently, depending on your preference. Similarly, the National Defence Act provides an exemption from jury duty for active service personnel.

Other exemptions are granted at the discretion of the sheriff. These include:

  • if you have health issues that will interfere with your role as a juror;
  • if you are a full-time student;
  • if you belong to a religion or a religious order that makes service as a juror incompatible with the beliefs or practices of the religion or order; or
  • if you would suffer extreme hardship;
  • if you are limited in your ability to speak English;
  • if you have firm travel or vacation plans that conflict with the jury selection or trial dates.

If you need to seek an exemption, do so well in advance of the jury selection date.

You can make your request online using the eResponse link noted on the front of your summons 24/7. You are provided a field to explain the reasons for your request for exemption using eResponse. Alternatively, you may submit your exemption request in writing by completing the juror certification form enclosed in the summons and returning it in the envelope provided.

Respond to your jury summons online here: Court Services eResponse website.

If your exemption request is refused by the sheriff, you will be given the chance to apply to the judge to be exempted on the day of jury selection. Please note, unless you have been expressly exempted by the sheriff, you are required to attend for selection.

Still have questions? See Frequently Asked Questions.