Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Juror Information Questionnaire

Rule 632. Juror Information Questionnaire.

(A) Prior to voir dire:

(1) Each prospective juror shall complete and verify the standard, confidential juror information questionnaire required by paragraph (H) of this rule, and any supplemental questionnaire provided by the court.

(2) The president judge shall designate the method for distributing and maintaining the juror information questionnaires.

(3) The trial judge and the attorneys shall receive copies of the completed questionnaires for use during voir dire, and the attorneys shall be given a reasonable opportunity to examine the questionnaires.

(B) The information provided by the jurors on the questionnaires shall be confidential and limited to use for the purpose of jury selection only. Except for disclosures made during voir dire, or unless the trial judge otherwise orders pursuant to paragraph (F), this information shall only be made available to the trial judge, the defendant(s) and the attorney(s) for the defendant(s), and the attorney for the Commonwealth.

(C) The original and any copies of the juror information questionnaires shall not constitute a public record.

(D) Juror information questionnaires shall be used in conjunction with the examination of the prospective jurors conducted by the judge or counsel pursuant to Rule 631(D).

(E) If the court adjourns before voir dire is completed, the trial judge may order that the attorneys be permitted to retain their copies of the questionnaires during the adjournment. When copies of the questionnaires are permitted to be taken from the courtroom, the copies:

(1) shall continue to be subject to the confidentiality requirements of this rule, and to the disclosure requirements of paragraph (B); and

(2) shall not be duplicated, distributed, or published.

The trial judge may make such other order to protect the copies as is appropriate.

(F) The original questionnaires of all impaneled jurors shall be retained in a sealed file and shall be destroyed upon completion of the jurors’ service, unless otherwise ordered by the trial judge. Upon completion of voir dire, all copies of the questionnaires shall be returned to the trial judge and destroyed, unless otherwise ordered by the trial judge at the request of the defendant(s), the attorney(s) for the defendant(s), or the attorney for the Commonwealth.

(G) The original and any copies of questionnaires of all prospective jurors not impaneled or not selected for any trial shall be destroyed upon completion of the jurors’ service.

(H) The form of the juror information questionnaire shall be as follows:

I hereby certify that the answers on this form are true and correct. I understand that false answers provided herein subject me to penalties under 18 Pa.C.S. § 4904 relating to unsworn falsification to authorities.