(a) Examination of Prospective Jurors.
(1) Prospective Jurors. The court must call for examination not more than the number of prospective jurors that equals the number of jurors necessary for the jury plus the number of peremptory challenges available to the parties, unless otherwise stipulated by the parties and approved by the court. If, after the parties have exercised their challenges, there are more jurors than required by Rule 48, the excess jurors must be excused in the inverse order in which they were called.
(2) Examination. The court may examine prospective jurors itself and it must permit the parties or their attorneys to make their own examination. The court may allow individual examination of prospective jurors in chambers.
(b) Challenges for Cause. If the court, after examination of any prospective juror, finds grounds for challenge for cause, the court must excuse that prospective juror. If the court does not excuse a prospective juror for cause, any party may make a challenge for cause.
(c) Peremptory Challenges.
(1) Number. Regardless of the size of the jury or the number of parties on a side, each side is entitled to four peremptory challenges. If the parties on a side have adverse or antagonistic interests, the court may grant them additional peremptory challenges.
(2) Procedure. All parties on a side must join in the challenge before it can be made unless the court, for good cause, permits otherwise. Peremptory challenges must be taken by the parties alternately, commencing with the plaintiff.
(d) Alternate Jurors.
(1) In General. The court may direct that one or two jurors in addition to the regular panel be called and impaneled to sit as alternate jurors. Alternate jurors in the order they are called replace jurors who, prior to the time the jury retires to consider its verdict, become or are found to be unable or disqualified to perform their duties.
(2) Procedure. Alternate jurors must be drawn in the same manner, have the same qualifications, be subject to the same examination and challenges, take the same oath, and have the same functions, powers, facilities, and privileges as the principal jurors. An alternate juror who does not replace a principal juror must be discharged after the jury retires to consider its verdict, unless the parties otherwise agree.
(3) Peremptory Challenges. If one or two alternate jurors are called each side is entitled to one peremptory challenge in addition to those otherwise allowed by this rule. The additional peremptory challenge may be used only against an alternate juror, and the other peremptory challenges allowed by this rule may not be used against the alternates.
Rule 47 was amended, effective March 1, 2011, in response to the December 1, 2007, revision of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The language and organization of the rule were changed to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
Rule 47 was amended, effective March 1, 2011, to interchange subdivisions (b) and (c). Former subdivision (b) became subdivision (c), and former subdivision (c) became subdivision (b).
Subdivision (a) was amended, effective January 1, 1988, to provide for a uniform jury selection process.
Subdivision (c), formerly subdivision (b), was amended, effective September 1, 1990, to reduce the number of peremptory challenges from six to four per side.
Subdivision (b), formerly subdivision (c), was adopted, effective January 1, 1979, and was derived from N.D.R.Crim.P. 24.
Subdivision (d) was amended, effective March 1, 2003, to clarify that each "side" is entitled to assert one peremptory challenge against an alternate juror.
SOURCES: Supreme Court Conference Minutes of January 17, 1990; September 28, 1987; Joint Procedure Committee Minutes of January 28-29, 2010, pages 5-6; September 24-25, 2009, pages 16-18, 19; April 25-26, 2002, page 16; May 21-22, 1987, pages 7-11; February 19-20, 1987, pages 19-20; May 25-26, 1978, pages 1-3, 25-26; March 16-17, 1978, pages 19-20; Fed.R.Civ.P. 47; N.D.R.Crim.P. 24; N.D.C.C. § 28-14-05 (superseded).
SUPERSEDED: N.D.C.C. § 28-14-05.
CONSIDERED: N.D.C.C. § 28-14-06.
CROSS REFERENCE: N.D.R.Civ.P. 38 (Jury Trial of Right), N.D.R.Civ.P. 48 (Juries of Less than Twelve Majority Verdict), N.D.R.Crim.P. 24(b)(2), N.D.C.C. §§ 14-03-01 (Size of Juries in Civil Cases), and 28-14-06 (Challenges for Cause Grounds).