Grand Jury Service
If you are summoned for grand jury service the Circuit Court Judge will instruct you on your responsibilities prior to your beginning work. The Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia publishes a Handbook for Virginia Grand Jurors that provides helpful information about grand juries.
An important function of a grand jury is to consider bills of indictment
prepared by the attorney for the Commonwealth and to determine as to each
indictment whether there is sufficient cause to return such indictment
"a true bill." In addition the grand jury may play an investigative
role and report on any condition which involves or tends to promote criminal
Code Section 19.2-191
Virginia law provides that every member of a regular or special grand
jury shall keep secret all proceedings which occurred during sessions
of the grand jury. VA
Code Section 19.2-192
How are grand jurors chosen?
Every year the Circuit Court Judge selects "at least 60 and not
more than 120 persons 18 years of age or over, of honesty, intelligence
and good demeanor and suitable in all respects to serve as grand jurors
during the upcoming year. Prior to each meeting of the grand jury not
less than five nor more than nine persons from the grand jury list are
summoned for grand jury service.
Where do grand jurors report for service?
The summons for grand jury service directs prospective grand jurors to
report to the Hanover County Circuit Court. The court is in the Circuit
Courthouse, 7507 Library Drive, Hanover, Virginia. Hanover
County Government Complex Map and Directions
How long will my grand jury service last?
Generally grand jurors report at 9:00 a.m. and complete their work by
1:00 p.m., but the proceedings could take longer. If you are limited in
the time that you can spend please bring that to the attention of the
Circuit Court Clerk (tel. 804-365-6152) as soon as you receive your summons.
You will also have an opportunity to raise your concerns to the Circuit
Court Judge on the day that you report to serve.
How often will I be called for grand jury service?
Generally grand jurors' service is limited to one appearance per year.
The Circuit Court Judge will explain at the time that you report for service
the circumstances under which you may be called back for additional proceedings.
It is possible for a grand juror's name to remain on the grand jury list
for successive years.
How much am I paid for grand jury service?
Virginia law provides that grand jurors shall be entitled to thirty dollars
for each day of attendance for expenses of travel incident to jury service
and other necessary and reasonable costs.