Welcome to Federal Jury Service

Fort Smith Division

***Important Reporting Instructions***

Complete your Jury Information Form using eJuror within 5 days of receiving your summons. You will need your nine-digit Participant Number, located to the right of your name and address (ex. 100012345), to log in. If completing the form online, please do not mail or fax the paper copy.

If a hardship might prevent you from serving, you must first complete and return the Jury Information Form. You should then e-mail or call the Jury Administration Office as soon as possible to discuss the nature of your hardship.

Unless excused in advance, the failure to report as directed may be punished by any combination of the following: a fine of up to $1,000; three days imprisonment; and/or an order to perform community service.



Welcome to jury service for the United States District Court. Serving as a juror is a fundamental obligation we all share as citizens of the United States. Only by having people like you participate in this process can we ensure that all persons will be afforded their constitutional right to have a jury pool drawn from a fair cross-section of this community. We hope you will find your service an interesting and rewarding experience.

Fort Smith Division counties include: Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Logan, Polk, Scott, and Sebastian.



You will receive automated calls from the Court reminding you of your repoert date. You must also call the automated line after 5:50p.m. the night before your report date for further reporting instructions. When you call, you will need your nine-digit Participant Number to log-in. If you report in error, because you failed to call the night before, you will not be paid or credited for that day's attendance.


Requests to be excused from jury service must be submitted in writing, as soon as possible prior to your reporting date, via eJuror, e-mail, or regular mail. Excuse letters submitted by your employer will not be accepted. Excuses requested at the time of reporting may not be accepted (and if an untimely excuse were granted, you wouldn't receive an attendance fee or mileage reimbursement for that day.) If you have a chronic issue or conflict you may include such information with your Jury Information Form. If a chronic medical issue is the basis of your request, a letter from your doctor may be helpful, but is not required.


Please use the back of the Jury Information Form (JIF) or log in to eJuror to request a temporary excuse that is due to a medical appointment, vacation, business trip, etc. that has already been scheduled and falls during your term of service. Please list the date(s) you will be unavailable, including the next date you will be available.


If you cannot serve during this term of service because it creates an undue hardship due to a temporary circumstance, you may request a postponement of your jury service. Please indicate the next date, in the near future, that you will be available along with your explanation of why you are requesting the postponement on the back of the JIF. Example: You are not available due to surgery, extended vacation (30 days or longer), or seasonal business hardship.


You are on call for 60 days from the first date you report. Your 60 day term does not start on the first date you are summoned to report. With that in mind, we do not keep you on call indefinitely. The number of days you actually report is limited to no more than ten days, depending on the trial circumstances.


Under federal law, employers must allow their employees time off for jury duty. An employee cannot be punished by their employer in any way for jury service, as provided in statute 28 U.S.C. § 1875.


The attendance fee is $40.00 per day. Federal employees are paid an attendance fee only during the hours they would not be at work. Note: Employees of the U. S. Postal Service are not considered employees of the U. S. Government.

You will be reimbursed for round-trip mileage from your home to the courthouse at a rate of 57.5¢ per mile. Please note the mileage from your home to the courthouse (one-way) on your first reporting date and be prepared to report that mileage when you check in. The mileage estimate you provide on the JIF will not be recorded.

Checks are sent out weekly, when possible, to your mailing address on record.Upon your request, we will furnish a Certificate of Attendance, listing the date(s) you reported and your attendance fee. If your employer pays your normal salary while you are on jury service, it may or may not seek recovery of your juror pay. Check your employer's policies. Your mileage reimbursement, however, is not taxable and is not recoverable by your employer. At this time there is no law that requires employers to pay you or at least make up the difference when you serve on a jury.


Cell phones, weapons, and electronic devices of any kind are NOT permitted in the courthouse.

You will need your summons and photo ID with you when you report.

The first day you report, you will be given a one-time orientation and will participate in at least one jury selection. If the jury selection is cancelled, due to a change in the court calendar or otherwise, there will not be an orientation held that day, even if it is your first date to report.

You may be needed each day of the week for which you are summoned. More than one trial is usually scheduled for the week. Jury trials in the Western District typically last about two to five days; however, trial length can vary greatly depending on the nature of the case, and in some instances a trial can last several weeks.

There are no standard court hours; however, most trials run from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. You will be given at least an hour for lunch and breaks approximately every 1 ½ hours during the trial, as directed by the Judge. If you are not selected to serve, you could be dismissed by early afternoon. Sometimes trials can last into the evening hours. If that happens, you will have ample time to make any necessary arrangements and advise your family.

We have criminal and civil trials in federal court. Criminal trials consist of juries composed of 12 to 14 jurors; civil trials are composed of 6 to 12 jurors. The number of jurors has no bearing on the significance of the trial; it is a matter of law and judicial preference.


The City of Fort Smith has authorized jurors to park in the PUBLIC METER PARKING LOT across from the Fort Smith Convention Center in the 800 block of Rogers Avenue (look for the green sign with white lettering identifying the lot). You do not have to put money in the meter. Do not park in the parking garage! You may also park at any of the metered spaces on the streets near the Judge Isaac C. Parker Federal Building. If you park at a meter and receive a yellow parking meter violation notice, please bring the notice to the Jury Assembly Room, 307, so it can be voided.

You will be responsible for any traffic citations that you may receive for improper parking, such as parking in a restricted space or in the parking garage. When a large number of jurors report for service, parking may be a problem. Please leave home early enough to allow time to find adequate parking.


You should dress appropriately for the courtroom. Business casual is encouraged such as: collared shirts, slacks, skirts or blouses. Shorts, t-shirts, tank-tops, and flip-flops are not appropriate. You may want to bring a sweater or jacket, as the courtroom can be chilly.

Refrigerators and microwaves are available if you bring your lunch or snacks. Coffee, soft drinks, and pastries are provided for your refreshment.

There is a no smoking policy in the courthouse. Smokers will be asked to step outside of the courthouse during breaks.


U. S. District Judges are:

Honorable P.K. Holmes, III, Chief District Judge - Fort Smith

Honorable Susan O. Hickey - El Dorado

Honorable Timothy L. Brooks - Fayetteville

Honorable Harry F. Barnes - El Dorado

Honorable Robert T. Dawson - Fort Smith


U. S. Magistrate Judges are:

Honorable Barry A. Bryant, Chief Magistrate Judge - Texarkana

Honorable Erin L. Setser - Fayetteville

Honorable Mark E. Ford - Fort Smith

Honorable James R. Marschewski - Fort Smith

The Western District is comprised of five divisions, namely: El Dorado, Fort Smith, Hot Springs, Northwest, and Texarkana.


If you have any questions about your reporting instructions, e-mail jury_info@arwd.uscourts.gov. Or, if you would prefer, call the Jury Help Line at (479) 783-2143 and speak to the Jury Administration Office.