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The County of DuPage
Wheaton, Illinois

Standing Order Concerning Jury Trials for Courtroom 2010


Final Trial Conference

Be prepared to present and address motions in limine.  Have case authority for any "unique" or unusual motions.

Follow the JURY INSTUCTION PROTOCOL attached to this Standing Order for Jury Trial Procedures.  In addition, provide one clean copy for the jury and marked copies for the court, as well for each attorney, of all proposed instructions.  There will be an informal conference off the record, then a formal conference on the record before closing arguments.

Bring objections raised in evidence depositions to the court's attention at the Final Trial Conference.

Consult on the estimated length of trial and advise the court at the Final Trial Conference.

Jury Selection

The court will conduct initial questioning, followed by plaintiff, then defendant.  Address back striking at the Final Trial Conference.  Excuse a juror up front if you know you are going to excuse.

Consider stipulating to a unanimous verdict of less than 12, or agree on the number of alternates.

We will select in panels of 4 for a jury of 12; panels of 6 for a jury of 6.

Five (5) peremptory challenges per side; up to eight (8) if multiple parties.  735 ILCS 5/2-1106. Exercise peremptory challenges in open court; ask for a side bar on challenges for cause.

Try not to repeat questions already asked.

Trial Conduct

Exhibit lists are to be exchanged between parties prior to the Final Trial Conference with a copy to the judge at the Conference.  Exhibits are to be pre-marked, such as "Plaintiff's Ex.#1" or "P'sEx.#1".  Do not move for admission into evidence in front of jury unless agreed.  Do not request that an exhibit be published to the jury unless you have 12 (or 6 as appropriate) identical copies of the exhibit.

Speaking objections are not allowed.  If needed, ask for a side bar.  Do not instruct a witness or juror.  If necessary, request the court in instruct.  Do not address each other in front of jury; address the court.

Witness examination shall consist of Direct/Cross/Redirect/Done.  Anything else - ask for a sidebar.

You may bring a court reporter if you wish, but CourtSmart is the official record.  A daily copy is available through CourtSmart.

Rule 213 objections concerning the scope of a witness' testimony during trial shall be taken in chambers.  Proponent of testimony must point to disclosure or deposition testimony supporting testimony.  If necessary, be prepared to provide the court with a copy of the Rule 213 disclosures and transcripts of discovery depositions.

As a general rule, I do not allow written juror questions to witnesses under Supreme Court Rule 243.  If a party wishes to have that procedure followed, bring it to the attention of the court at the Final Trial Conference.

Motions for a directed finding or for a mistrial are to be made outside the presence of the jury.