A new service enabling people to answer a jury summons online will be available from this week.
The platform, developed by the Courts Service, will also enable people to follow the status of their reply; and catch real-time updates on any changes to their jury service details.
From this week, jury summons will start issuing on a phased basis offering people the option to reply online.
The platform will initially be available to those called for jury service in the Dublin area, and roll-out will extend across the country on a phased basis over the coming months.
Anyone who receives a summons inviting them to respond online should follow the details on the summons and scan the QR code. If a summons is received without a QR code, the option to reply online has not yet opened in that particular area.
No changes are being made to jury service selection, and jurors will continue to be selected at random from the register of electors.
Over the last number of months, the online project has been piloted in Kilkenny, Mayo, Tipperary, and Waterford.
Courts Service chief executive Angela Denning said, in those four counties, about 30 per cent of people who responded to their summons did so using the new online platform.
“This is higher than other systems internationally, and very high for a pilot scheme. Encouragingly, feedback received from those who used the new platform has been positive,” she said.
“Providing user-friendly options for people to engage with our services is at the heart of the Courts Service modernisation programme. Our modernisation programme aims to realise our Strategic Vision 2030 to support access to justice in a modern, digital Ireland,” Ms Denning said.
The platform will allow for 24/7 access to those who have received a summons, providing immediate updates on any changes in times, dates or jury cancellations, and immediate electronic responses to requests to be excused from jury service.
Ms Denning said the new service reduces the reliance on paper-based processes and many outdated tech platforms. “The benefits of this online option for the user we anticipate will include increased customer satisfaction and improved accessibility to our services.”
A centralised jury summons office in Castlebar had helped the digital jury project team to improve the current jury system with the new online jury platform, she said.
The platform has the potential to reduce the time of opening and handling letters, and work hours dedicated to answering phone calls, freeing up staff for other front-office, customer-service and court duties, she added.
An information video about the new service is available at here.