On this site, we love talking about side hustles. Finding a good side hustle is a powerful way to get some extra money into your pocket. In this post, we’re talking about the idea of being an online jurist.
We were interested in whether you really can make money doing online jury duty.
Making Money Doing Online Jury Duty
Let’s start with the obvious, what is online jury duty?
The idea surprised me when I first came across it, but it is actually fairly common. Basically, people are paid to take part in a mock jury. This gives lawyers the chance to see how their cases are likely to be received.
The cases in question may not be actual legal cases that will go to court. Instead, they may be developed to help lawyers to test arguments or for general education. Some of the time, you may be dealing with real cases. It really depends on the individual situation.
There are in-person mock jury roles out there as well, but these can often be complex and take up a significant amount of time. An in-person role would require you to be at a certain place at a certain time, which may not be ideal.
Online jury duty is a clever idea. The online jurors get to do something interesting to earn money, while law firms are able to find out important information.
Signing people up online makes sense too. After all, there’s no need for mock jurors to ever be in the same room together. The style allows for more flexibility too, which means that the experience could be different from one company to the next.
Becoming A Virtual Juror
Virtual jury tasks can be found on a small selection of specialized sites. Each of these makes roughly the same claims, although appear more reliable than others.
You may need to sign up for multiple sites, as there’s no way to know how often you’ll get cases. The sites all tend to email members when cases are available, so juggling multiple services shouldn’t be an issue.
Just make sure that you check your emails regularly. Cases tend to be on a first-come-first-serve basis.
How Much Can You Make As An Online Juror
Perhaps not surprisingly, this type of work doesn't pay much. Like any other kind of “easy” work you can find online, it's in-demand, which means wages are depressed. They aren't going to pay six people $100 each, multiple times per month, where all you have to do is state your opinion. It's just not gonna happen.
Based on my research, I found that sites will pay between $5 to $60 per case.
You are not going to get paid per hour!
Online Verdict is one of the few sites in this field that actually looks appealing at first glance. According to their FAQ, once you are signed up for the site, you’ll get an email invitation when there is a case for you.
When you accept the case, you’ll need to agree to a confidentiality policy, after which you’ll be provided with case materials and questions. The goal is to answer the questions as honestly as you can.
Estimates on their site suggest that a case can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 60 minutes – and pay between $20 and $60. That’s not a bad pay rate.
The challenge is that you’re only eligible for cases in your local area, making this a better choice for people in large cities. Even then, it isn’t clear how many cases you’ll get.
Virtual Jury provides much less information about their processes. I wasn’t able to find information about how long the cases would take nor what members are paid per case.
I stepped through the registration process to see whether any more information was provided on the other side, but I didn’t have much luck. The sign-up form asked for a surprising amount of personal information and then gave me an error when I tried to submit.
I’ve found very few extra details about Virtual Jury on other sites, which suggests that other people have struggled to sign up as well. Or, at the very least, those that have been successful haven’t written reviews.
The website for EJury is another one that does not look appealing. However, the site does contain information about exactly what users can expect. This includes the information that you’ll be given, how you’ll be contacted and what will be expected of you.
EJury estimates that cases take roughly 35 minutes and pay between $5 and $10 each. That’s not an amazing wage, but it could give you a chance to earn a little extra money periodically.
The cases are county-specific, so the amount of work will be influenced by where you live. Positions in a case are also available on a first-come-first-served basis. This means that you might miss out if there are many users in your area.
Jury Talk provides less information than any of the other services. They just have a single page and a link to the signup form. That’s it. No details about payment or the processes involved.
The signup form is even less encouraging. It is detailed and asks for personal information like your phone number, physical address and relationship status. I don’t like the idea of giving this much information to a website that provides so few details in return.
Members of JuryTest can earn from $5 to $50 per case. The amount that you earn is influenced by the complexity of the case and also by the responses that you provide.
While the site itself seems to be mostly developed for attorneys, it does provide information for potential jurors as well.
The biggest flaw is that the site looks seriously out-of-date. A poorly designed site may still function well, but it’s hard to trust a company that cannot even get the basics right.
Can You Make Money As An Online Juror?
There is the chance to make money with online jury sites, but the odds are going to depend on where you live. If you do get a case, then it is likely to take less than an hour and may pay somewhere from $5 to $60 (depending on the case and the site).
You’ll also need to pay close attention to your emails, as cases may fill quickly, especially if they do not come up very often.
There aren’t many reviews from people who have completed and got paid for a case. As such, your best approach may be to try these sites out and see how it goes.
Just make sure that you’re comfortable with what the site asks for before giving away any personal information. For example, Online Verdict and eJury both appear to be relatively safe choices, while JuryTest is much less appealing.
That being said, we did find one Redditor who claimed to have completed online jury cases. He didn’t mention which site he got paid by but said that he earned $35 for one case and $20 for another. That’s pretty good and shows that the sites do pay. In fact, that's the only person we could find with specifics of how much they made.
Plus, he only completed one case in a ten month period. So in my mind, it's pretty clear that making money as an online juror is just not viable. Not for income anyway.
My Personal Feelings About Online Jury Duty
I like the idea of online jury duty, but in practice, it's just not something I'd personally invest my time into. Making money this way would certainly be more interesting than filling out random surveys or doing other menial tasks, but it doesn't seem like you can actually make any good amount of money.
Cases may not arrive all that often, so this wouldn’t be a side hustle that you could turn into a regular source of income. Still, it could be the right fit if you just are that bored that you can read your email and be ready to answer some questions at a moments notice.
The most important thing is to be careful. Avoid any sites that are brand new, along with any ‘job’ postings on forums, Craigslist and other locations. Such recruitment strategies tend to be linked to scams. The best places for scams to thrive is in communities where people are desperate for quick cash.
If you’re at all uncertain, walk away. Seriously. Being on an online jury doesn’t pay nearly enough for you to put yourself at risk.
Our Final Opinion Of Online Jury Duty
Should you sign up as an online jurist and try to make some money?