Petit Jury Law and Legal Definition

A petit jury is an old-fashioned name for the jury thst hears a lawsuit or criminal prosecution. Petit is the French term meaning "small", to distinguish it from a "grand" jury, which performs other duties, mainly to return an indictment or not. A person on a petit jury is part of the most common type of jury service.

The usual procedure for selecting a petit jury involves taking names from the voter registration list of your county, according to guidelines which assure a random selection from a fair cross-section of the community. A person is then mailed a qualification form to fill in and mail back. After it is determined by the court that they were qualified to serve, they are summoned for duty.