bronze court seal State of New Mexico Second District Court

Jury Division

Bernalillo County Courthouse
400 Lomas Blvd NW
Room 127 (1st Floor)
Albuquerque, NM 87102

Phone: (505) 841-7507
Code-a-Phone: (505) 841-7510
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. M-F
Closed on Court Holidays


Frequently Asked Questions

  • I've just received my summons. What do I do next?
  • How soon do I need to mail my forms back?
  • Why do I have to pay postage to return my forms?
  • Why are you asking all these questions on the juror Questionnaire?
  • I've misplaced my forms. What should I do?
  • I've received a summons for a family member who is deceased. What should I do?
  • I've received a summons for a family member who no longer lives in New Mexico. What should I do with it?
  • Where did you get my name?
  • I've been called to serve three times in the last five years and none of my friends have ever been called. Why don't you pick some other people?
  • I served as a juror less than three years ago. Am I still obligated to serve?
  • Is Jury Service mandatory?
  • I'm not a US citizen. What do I do?
  • I'm over 75 years of age. Can't you remove my name from your records?
  • How do I go about performing my Jury Service? What can I expect?
  • When I report for jury selection for a trial, what will happen?
  • Where do I park for Jury Service?
  • What do I do if I'm asked to report and there are unsafe weather conditions?
  • How long will I serve as a juror?
  • Are there ever any instances when I may have to serve longer?
  • How long does an average trial last?
  • What happens if I don't show up when I hear my number called?
  • Will I be compensated for my jury service?
  • I am a government employee. Will I still be compensated?
  • Does my employer have to pay me for serving as a juror?
  • Can my employer penalize me for service on Jury Service?
  • I do not have transportation and/or a driver's license. Am I still expected to report for jury duty?
  • What should I wear when reporting for Jury Service?
  • I'm requesting to be excused. Do I need to complete the forms?
  • How do I request an excusal from Jury Service?
  • May I be excused from jury service over the phone?
  • I know that I will not be selected to be on the jury because of what I do for a living. Why not excuse me now and save time?
  • I am unable to judge anyone because of my moral or religious beliefs. May I be excused?
  • My jury summons came at a very bad time. May I postpone my service?
  • I do not speak, read or write English. What do I do?
  • Can I bring my cell-phone, laptop, tablet, or other portable electronic devices?


    If you still have questions regarding your jury service, please call us at 841-7507 or e-mail albdjury@nmcourts.gov



    I've just received my summons. What do I do next?

    The first thing you’ll need to do is to fill out the Questionnaire and Qualification forms that are included with your summons. Answer all questions honestly and fully. Please take special care to provide us with an e-mail address that you regularly access, as we will be sending you important instructions by this means. (Note: this address will be used ONLY for this purpose, and will not be shared with any other party, or division of the Court.) If you do not have such an e-mail address, you will be contacted by phone or mail, so be sure to provide us with a phone number as well. In each case, please write clearly and legibly. After completing and signing your forms, please mail them back to us in the return envelope provided. After we receive them, you will be contacted with further instructions.

    For an overview of the process, and what to expect while on jury duty, click here.





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    How soon do I need to mail my forms back?

    It’s important that you complete and mail your forms back within 5 days of receiving them. Failure to return them within the allotted time may result in delays and inconvenience to you.





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    Why do I have to pay postage to return my forms?

    The Jury Management Division at Second Judicial District Court spends over $20,000 annually in postage to mail summons, juror checks and other communications. Postage for returned Questionnaires would nearly double the cost.





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    Why are you asking all these questions on the juror Questionnaire?

    The questions asked on the Qualification form are accessed only by jury division staff, and are not shared with any other party, including judges and attorneys. The questions on the Questionnaire are asked in order to provide the judges and attorneys with some basic information regarding your suitability to serve as a juror on the specific trial for which you are summoned. Answering these questions in written format will shorten the jury selection process, and also limit the need to ask you personal or potentially embarrassing questions in open court. Please note that, pursuant to New Mexico Supreme Court Order 00-8500, all such Questionnaires in the possession of the Court or any other party, must be destroyed 90 days after the juror’s term of service ends. We rigorously adhere to that directive.





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    I've misplaced my forms. What should I do?

    The forms are available on this site. Simply click here and print out the forms.





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    I've received a summons for a family member who is deceased. What should I do?

    Do not throw it away. Indicate on the forms DECEASED, attach a copy of the death certificate and mail the entire packet back to the Jury Management Division.





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    I've received a summons for a family member who no longer lives in New Mexico. What should I do with it?

    Do not throw it away. Indicate on the forms the name and the new address of the individual summoned. Return the entire packet to the Jury Management Division. The individual will be contacted to provide proof of the new address.





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    Where did you get my name?

    Your name was randomly selected from a merged database consisting of licensed drivers, registered voters and New Mexico personal income tax filers.





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    I've been called to serve three times in the last five years and none of my friends have ever been called. Why don't you pick some other people?

    A computer program randomly selects names from the master jury database. In the same way that a tossed coin may come up “heads” several times in a row, so some people may be selected more often in the short term. Theoretically, this seeming imbalance will even out over time.





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    I served as a juror less than three years ago. Am I still obligated to serve?

    New Mexico statute allows those citizens who served within the previous three years to be excused from the session for which they have been summoned, if they request it. Names of jurors who have served within this period of time are not automatically excluded, as many jurors who have recently served are interested in serving again. If you have served within the preceding 3 years, and wish to be excused at this time, please fill out the Qualification form (making sure you answer all questions) along with the Questionnaire, and return it to us as soon as possible.





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    Is Jury Service mandatory?

    Yes. The United States Constitution and the New Mexico State Constitution guarantee the right to trial by jury. Failure to attend as directed may subject you to penalties provided by law. All Bernalillo County residents are obligated by state law to serve as a juror unless they:

  • Are not a citizen of the United States
  • Are under 18 years of age
  • Have been convicted of a felony and have not completed all terms of their sentence, including probation and/or parole




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    I'm not a US citizen. What do I do?

    As stated above, the law automatically disqualifies non-citizens from jury service. If you are not a citizen of the United States, you will need to provide a copy of your residency card, along with the completed Qualification form to the Jury Division.





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    I'm over 75 years of age. Can't you remove my name from your records?

    Yes. New Mexico statutes allow for the permanent excusal of all such individuals who request it. If you fall into this category, the law requires that you complete an affidavit attesting to your age. This document MUST be notarized. To print out a copy of this document for you to fill out, click here. After you complete it (including notarization), mail it to: P.O. Box 488, Albuquerque, NM 87103. Attention: Jury Management Division.





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    How do I go about performing my Jury Service? What can I expect?

    After you have returned your Questionnaire and Qualification forms, you will be contacted by e-mail shortly before your term of service begins with specific instructions for beginning your service. (If you do not have a regularly-accessible e-mail address, you will be contacted by phone). At that time, you will be provided with a randomly-assigned juror number. You will be instructed to call a recorded message each evening after 4:30pm and listen to hear if your number was randomly selected for any scheduled trial beginning the next business day. (As an alternative, you may access this website, again after 4:30pm each evening, to see a list of called jurors). This is how you will proceed through your session. As previously stated, though you will call each evening, or as instructed, you may only have to report 2-3 times, on average. The only time when this will vary is if you have been selected to serve on a trial. If that happens, then the judge will give you instructions regarding reporting. Once you have finished serving on a trial, you will return to calling the recorded message, or checking this site, unless your term of service is over. It is possible, though rare, that you may serve as a juror on more than one trial during a session.





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    When I report for jury selection for a trial, what will happen?

    When reporting for jury selection, you must first check in with the jury staff. They will ask you for your name and juror number. After this, you will wait in our Jury Assembly Room (#127) at the Bernalillo County Courthouse until all jurors who have been instructed to report have arrived. (Occasionally, you may be asked to report to Juvenile Court at 5100 2nd St., NW, but you will be given clear instructions if that happens.) After all jurors have arrived, the Judge before whom you have been summoned will be notified. As soon as any preliminary court matters have been dealt with, the Judge’s bailiff will take all the jurors to the courtroom for a process called “voir dire.” This is a procedure during which the attorneys for the parties will ask questions to determine the suitability of each juror to serve on the particular case. In addition, the Judge may tell you something about the case, as well as how long it is expected to last. This process may last from 1 to 5 hours, (in rare cases, longer) depending on the case.

    Once this step is over, you will report back to the jury assembly room to wait while the panel is selected. This process usually lasts 1 to 2 hours.

    After the jury has been selected, the bailiff will again report to the assembly room where the chosen jurors will be taken to the courtroom to be sworn in. In most cases the trial will begin immediately. Those jurors who were not selected will be released at this time, with an instruction to continue to call each day as instructed.

    Note: A complaint sometimes expressed by jurors concerns the unexplained time seemingly wasted during jury selection and trials. What might appear to be wasted time is actually being used by the judge and attorneys working on matters that must be done outside the presence of the jury. These events often arise unexpectedly and cannot be planned for. A case may settle just before a trial, thereby eliminating the need for your services that day as a juror. In fact, the presence of a waiting jury panel often accelerates this result. So your presence that day will have played a vital role in our legal system. Please be aware of these possibilities, and bear with us as we all work to accomplish our goal of achieving justice for all.





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    Where do I park for Jury Service?

    Jurors reporting for jury duty may park free of charge at the MetroPark parking structure. It is located just north of Metropolitan Court, and may be accessed by going north on 5th street from Lomas Blvd. The entrance to the structure is on the right immediately north of Slate Street. Look for the yellow sign that says “Juror and Public Parking.” Bring your parking ticket with you and we will validate your parking. If you have an oversize vehicle, please contact our office for instructions. Please note that we cannot validate your parking if you choose to park at any other facility, nor can we reimburse you for any fees that you have paid for parking. To view a map of the downtown area, click here.





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    What do I do if I'm asked to report and there are unsafe weather conditions?

    In such a circumstance, this Court follows the “closure” guidelines of Albuquerque Public Schools. Please check your local television or radio station to find out if inclement weather has closed (or delayed the opening) of the Albuquerque Public Schools. Note: We do not follow the “East Mountain” school closure guidelines.





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    How long will I serve as a juror?

    A petit juror “session” typically lasts 3 weeks in Bernalillo County. However, during this time, our experience is that a juror may report for jury selection 2-3 times on average. You will be calling a recorded message (or you may check the on-line juror schedule) each evening after 5:30pm to see if you have been randomly selected for the next day.





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    Are there ever any instances when I may have to serve longer?

    In rare instances, a jury panel may be selected towards the end of their assigned session for a trial which lasts beyond the session date. If that happens, those selected jurors are obligated to serve for the length of the trial. Though rare, it does happen.





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    How long does an average trial last?

    The average length, from jury selection through verdict, is slightly over two days; however, occasionally a trial will last a week or longer.





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    What happens if I don't show up when I hear my number called?

    Jury service is the bedrock of our judicial system and is an essential civic obligation to which all citizens are subject. It depends on the participation of those chosen to serve. If one or more jurors don’t appear as directed, it may cause a delay in the trial. Such delays are very expensive to the taxpayers of Bernalillo county. In addition, jurors who did show up as instructed are inconvenienced. Because of this, only the most urgent, unexpected and unavoidable emergencies can be considered as a valid reason for your absence. At the very least, those jurors who do not appear as instructed may expect their service will be re-scheduled to another session. In some instances, jurors who fail to appear have been brought before a judge to explain their absence. And in rare instances, a judge may direct that a warrant be issued for the juror’s arrest. If you find yourself in a situation where it is impossible to appear as instructed, you must call our office (841-7507) as soon as possible after 8:00am on the morning you are expected to report. The judge will be informed of your absence and the reason for it.





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    Will I be compensated for my jury service?

    The Court is authorized by New Mexico statute to pay you $6.25 per hour. Mileage is reimbursed at 41 cents per mile for travel to and from the courthouse. Mileage is computed based on the information you provided on the Qualification form and your mailing ZIP code. Checks will be mailed to your home address. On average, you should expect to receive payment for your jury service six to eight weeks after the end of your session. If payment is not received within 10 weeks of your jury service, please contact our office at 841-7507. Your payment cannot be split between hourly and mileage reimbursement. Please note: If you wish, you may waive your hourly pay or your mileage reimbursement. Simply indicate your wish to do so on the Qualification form.





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    I am a government employee. Will I still be compensated?

    If you are employed by the city of Albuquerque, Bernalillo County, UNM, UNMH, CNM, APS, or the State of New Mexico, you will not be compensated by the court for your jury service, as it is the court’s understanding that you will continue to receive your hourly pay while on jury duty. If, however, you report for jury service on your own time, instead of your regular working hours, it is your responsibility to inform us so that you can be personally credited and paid. If you do not inform us of this before the end of your session, it will be too late.

    If you are a federal employee, payment for your service will be issued to you. Please check with your Human Resources department to determine how they would like to have your pay processed.





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    Does my employer have to pay me for serving as a juror?

    No. State law does not require employers to compensate their jurors while they are on jury service. Please check with your employer regarding your company’s policy.





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    Can my employer penalize me for service on Jury Service?

    No. New Mexico statute §38-5-18 states “An employer shall not deprive an employee of employment or threaten or otherwise coerce the employee because the employee receives a summons for jury service, responds to the summons, serves as a juror or attends court for perspective jury service. An employer shall not require or request an employee to use annual, vacation or sick leave for time spent responding to a summons for jury service, participating in the jury selection process or serving on a jury.”





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    I do not have transportation and/or a driver's license. Am I still expected to report for jury duty?

    Yes. A lack of transportation or not having a valid drivers license does NOT excuse you from jury service. The summons was mailed to you with sufficient notice to arrange transportation.

    Information regarding the City of Albuquerque bus routes can be found here. Information regarding the NM Rail Runner can be found here.





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    What should I wear when reporting for Jury Service?

    Though there is no specific dress code, we request that you dress in a manner befitting the dignity of the court. Jackets and ties are not required for men. Jeans are acceptable. Shorts, spaghetti straps, tank tops, bare midriffs and the like are not considered appropriate. Hats may be worn, but must be removed before entering the courtroom. We ask that police officers, firefighters, and other civil servants or law-enforcement officials refrain from reporting for jury duty in uniform.

    Due to variable temperatures in the courthouse, we recommend that you dress in layers.





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    I'm requesting to be excused. Do I need to complete the forms?

    Yes. To request an excusal, please complete all forms, in addition to the section specifically addressing your request to be excused. It’s important that you supply the required documentation as described. Mail your forms back as quickly as possible. You will be notified by phone or e-mail (if you have provided an e-mail address that you regularly access) of the outcome of your request. Please note that we cannot process requests to be excused by phone. See below under “Excuse from Service” for more information.





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    How do I request an excusal from Jury Service?

    Prospective jurors otherwise eligible to serve may be excused from jury service only for extreme hardship and severe medical issues. All requests must be submitted to the Jury Management Division IN WRITING prior to the prospective juror’s service date as explained on the juror Questionnaire. The request for excusal, along with required documentation, may also be faxed to our office at 505-841-6769. Until you have received notification from the Court, you are not excused.

    A prospective juror may be excused if he/she:

  • Has a physical or mental disability that would prevent him/her from service. The prospective juror is required to provide a doctor’s note (on the doctor’s letterhead or prescription pad) attesting to the disability.
  • Must provide actual and necessary care for another, and alternate arrangements are not feasible. A doctor’s note (on the doctor’s letterhead or prescription pad) is required attesting to this situation.
  • Will suffer an extreme financial burden if required to serve that would substantially prevent the prospective juror from paying his/her necessary daily living expenses. A detailed letter describing these circumstances is required.
  • Is serving on “Active Duty” with the military and is not stationed in the county. A letter from the prospective juror’s superior officer so stating is required.
  • Is over the age of 75, and provides an notarized affidavit attesting to this fact. Click here for a copy of this document for you to fill out.




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    My jury summons came at a very bad time. May I postpone my service?

    The Court realizes prospective jurors may have been summoned at an inconvenient time and is willing to defer your service to a more convenient time in most instances. Jurors may request a first-time postponement by completing the appropriate section of the Qualification form, along with the completed Questionnaire, and returning it back to us by mail. All requests for postponement must be in writing and either mailed or faxed to the Jury Management Division for review. Please note: New Mexico law does not allow a second postponement unless it is an extreme emergency that was not anticipated when the first postponement was granted.





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    May I be excused from jury service over the phone?

    No. All excuse requests must be in writing and mailed (or faxed) along with required documentation (see above) to the Jury Management Division for review.





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    I know that I will not be selected to be on the jury because of what I do for a living. Why not excuse me now and save time?

    The Jury Management Division cannot excuse you as a potential juror because of what you do for a living. The Second Judicial District Court tries both civil and criminal cases, each of which requires juries. The random selection process prevents you from knowing in advance what trial or even what type of trial you may be selected for.





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    I am unable to judge anyone because of my moral or religious beliefs. May I be excused?

    No. New Mexico law does not provide for an excuse from jury service for moral or religious beliefs. You are still required to appear for jury service. During the selection process, you may mention your moral and religious beliefs to the presiding judge.





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    I do not speak, read or write English. What do I do?

    In New Mexico, there is no exemption from service if you do not speak English. We will provide an interpreter for you. If you speak another language, please fill out your forms and mail them back to us, indicating which language you speak. We will make every effort to provide you with an interpreter. Again, you may not be excused from Jury Service because you do not speak English.





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    Can I bring my cell-phone, laptop, tablet, or other portable electronic devices?

    Yes, but with important restrictions; please read this carefully. Beginning on November 1st 2013, the court's policy on such devices will change. After this date, you will need to present a "juror e-voucher" upon entering the court on each and every entry. You will NOT be permitted to bring any of these devices into the court without this voucher.

  • The jury division will provide such vouchers to Petit Jurors by mail, approximately one week before their service begins.
  • For Grand Jurors, vouchers will be distributed at initial orientation; therefore, Grand Jurors may not bring any of the above listed devices to initial orientation.
  • Vouchers will be valid only for the term of your service, and may only be used when reporting for jury service; you may not use them while attending court on personal business.

    DO NOT LOSE THIS VOUCHER; IT MAY NOT BE REPLACED UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES. ONLY ONE VOUCHER WILL BE PROVIDED PER JUROR.

    Please note that if you are serving on a trial, you will be under the judge's instructions regarding the possession and use of any such devices.

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    Jury Duty Scam

    You answer the phone.

    The caller identifies themselves as an officer of the court. The caller states you failed to report for jury duty and a warrant is out for your arrest.

    You say you never received a notice. The caller says no problem, it can be cleared up right now, but more information will be needed for “verification purposes”–your birth date, Social Security number, maybe even a credit card number. Or the caller might say that if you give them that info to pay a “small fine,” the warrant will be dropped.

    This is when you should hang up the phone. It’s a scam.

    As a rule, jury officers never asked for confidential information over the phone; they generally correspond with prospective jurors via mail. There are certain situations (such as a Junior and Senior living at the same address and the summons does not specify which one) in which more information is required. In that situation the Jury Management Division would ask for the last four digits of the potential jurors Social Security number to ensure the correct person reports for jury duty.

    Protecting yourself against identity theft is the key: never give out personal information when you receive an unsolicited phone call.





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