CHAPTER 4. JURY DELIBERATIONS; VERDICT FORMS* 4:14 Rendering a Sealed Verdict 4:15 Special Verdict...

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Transcript of CHAPTER 4. JURY DELIBERATIONS; VERDICT FORMS* 4:14 Rendering a Sealed Verdict 4:15 Special Verdict...

  • (8/1/02) 4-1

    CHAPTER 4. JURY DELIBERATIONS; VERDICT FORMS*

    A. Deliberations 4:1 Summary Closing Instruction 4:2 Duties upon Retiring — Selection of Foreperson 4:2A Questions During Deliberations 4:3 Instruction When Jury Appears Deadlocked or Deliberation Unusually

    Prolonged B. Verdicts

    4:4 Verdict Form for Plaintiff — Single Plaintiff and Single Defendant — Actual or Nominal Damages Only

    4:5 Verdict Form for Plaintiff — Single Plaintiff and Single Defendant — Actual and Exemplary or Punitive Damages

    4:6 Verdict Form for Defendant — Single Plaintiff and Single Defendant 4:7 Verdict Forms for Single Plaintiff and Multiple Defendants, Multiple

    Plaintiffs and Single Defendant, and Multiple Plaintiffs and Multiple Defendants

    4:8 Verdict Form for Plaintiff on Counterclaim 4:9 Verdict Form for Defendant on Counterclaim 4:10 Verdict Form for Third Party Plaintiff 4:11 Verdict Form for Third Party Defendant 4:12 Verdict Form for Cross-Claimant 4:13 Verdict Form Against Cross-Claimant 4:14 Rendering a Sealed Verdict 4:15 Special Verdict (or Special Interrogatories) — Sample of Mechanics for

    Submitting 4:16 Special Verdict (or Special Interrogatories) Form — Sample 4:17 Body Judgment — When Awarded 4:18 Verdict Form for Plaintiff on Body Judgment 4:19 Instruction for Answering Special Verdict Forms 4:20 Special Verdict Form — Comparative Negligence or Fault — No

    Counterclaim — Single or Multiple Defendants — Designated Party or Nonparties Involved

    __________

    *For certain proceedings, particularized verdict forms have been prepared. See Instructions 9:26 through 9:28D (Comparative Negligence); 9:29A and 9:29B (Several Liability in Tort); 11:19 (“No Fault” Threshold Determination); 14:30 through 14:33

  • 4:1 Colorado Jury Instructions for Civil Trials

    4-2 (8/1/02)

    (Product Liability-Comparative Fault); 34:17 and 34:18 (Wills); 35:6 and 35:7 (Mental Health); 36:8 (Eminent Domain); 40:22 and 40:23 (Juvenile Delinquency); and 41:9 (Dependency and Neglect).

    A. DELIBERATIONS

    4:1 SUMMARY CLOSING INSTRUCTION

    These instructions contain the law that you must use in deciding this case. No single instruction states all the applicable law. All the instructions must be read and considered together.

    You must not be concerned with the wisdom of any rule of law. Regardless of any opinion you may have as to what the law should be, it would be a violation of your sworn duty to base a verdict upon any other view of the law than that given in the instructions of the Court.

    (The Court) (I) (does) (do) not, by these instructions, express any opinions as to what has or has not been proved in the case, or to what are or are not the facts of the case.

    Notes on Use 1. In juvenile delinquency proceedings, Instruction 40:16 should be used rather than this

    instruction. 2. This instruction should be given after the court has completed giving the jury all the

    instructions relating to the merits of the case. 3. If the court has taken judicial notice of any facts or the parties have stipulated to any

    facts, the last paragraph of this instruction should be modified accordingly.

    Source and Authority The combined provisions of this instruction are similar to STANDARD FORMS APPROVED BY

    THE FORMS STANDARDIZATION COMMITTEE OF THE COLORADO BAR ASSOCIATION, Form No. 11, “Jury Instructions-Civil,” No. 13; 2 E. DEVITT & C. BLACKMAR, FEDERAL JURY PRACTICE AND INSTRUCTIONS: CIVIL AND CRIMINAL § 71.01 (3d ed. 1977). See also COLORADO JURY INSTRUCTIONS-CRIMINAL 3:01 (rev. ed. 1983).

    4:2 DUTIES UPON RETIRING — SELECTION OF FOREPERSON

    The original forms of the written instructions and the exhibits are a part of the court record. Do not place any marks or notes on them. (The instructions labeled “copy” may be marked or used in any way you see fit.)

    The Bailiff will now escort you to the jury room. After you get to the jury room you shall select one of your members to be the foreperson of the jury. That person will be in charge of your discussions. You must all agree on your verdict, and you must sign the original form of whatever verdict(s) you reach.

  • Jury Deliberations — Verdict Forms 4:2A

    (8/1/02) 4-3

    Please notify the Bailiff when you have reached a verdict, but do not tell the Bailiff what your verdict is. You shall keep the verdict forms, these instructions and the exhibits until (the Court) (I) (gives) (give) you further instructions.

    Notes on Use 1. Omit the parenthesized sentence in the first paragraph of this instruction if copies of the

    original instructions have not been given to the jury. 2. In a district court case, if the parties have stipulated pursuant to C.R.C.P. 48 that the

    verdict or finding shall be by some stated majority rather than by unanimous vote, this instruction should be modified accordingly.

    3. In county court cases, the jury’s verdict must always be unanimous. C.R.C.P. 347(s). 4. While all members of the jury are directed to sign the verdict, the names of the jurors

    should still be called, in accord with the requirements of C.R.C.P. 47(q) or C.R.C.P. 347(q), and the jurors asked, at least collectively, by the court or clerk, if they have agreed upon a verdict, and if the foreman’s or forewoman’s answer is affirmative, the verdict should then be handed to the clerk. Kading v. Kading, 683 P.2d 373 (Colo.App. 1984) (failure to call the names of the jurors prior to receiving the verdict held harmless where all jurors had signed the verdict form). “Individual polling of the jurors is required under the rule only when requested by a party.” Id. at 376. On its own motion, the court may poll the jury individually to determine the validity of the verdict and should do so, for example, if one or more members of the jury failed to sign the verdict form returned. See C.R.C.P. 47(r) and (s), and C.R.C.P. 347(r) and (s).

    5. In juvenile delinquency proceedings, Instruction 40:17 should be used rather than this instruction.

    Source and Authority The jury may retire for their deliberations or arrive at a verdict in court. C.R.C.P. 47(1) and

    C.R.C.P. 347(1). These same rules prescribe the responsibilities of the bailiff if the jury does retire for their deliberations.

    4:2A QUESTIONS DURING DELIBERATIONS

    Once you begin your deliberations, if you have a question about the evidence in this case or about the instructions (or) (verdict forms) (special interrogatories) that you have been given, your Foreperson should write the question on a piece of paper, sign it and give it to the bailiff who will bring it to me.

    (The Court) (I) will then confer with the attorneys as to the appropriate way to answer your question. However, there may be some questions that, under the law, (the Court) (I) am not permitted to answer. If it is improper for (the Court) (me) to answer the question, (the Court) (I) will tell you that. Please do not speculate about what the answer to your question might be or why (the Court) (I) am not able to answer a particular question.

    Notes on Use 1. The “Report of the Colorado Supreme Court Committee on the Effective and Efficient

    Use of Juries” (the Report), which was adopted “in principle” by the Colorado Supreme Court in February 1997, recommends that:

  • 4:2A Colorado Jury Instructions for Civil Trials

    4-4 (8/1/02)

    The trial judge should instruct jurors about what they should do if they have a question during deliberations and how the judge will deal with it. Additionally, judges should be directed by the Chief Justice to attempt to answer the jurors’ questions. If the question cannot be answered, the judge should explain why that is so in a courteous and complete manner.

    (See recommendation No. 24 at page 49 of the Report.)

    Source and Authority See Comment to C.R.C.P. 42(a), effective January 1, 1999.

    4:3 INSTRUCTION WHEN JURY APPEARS DEADLOCKED OR DELIBERATION UNUSUALLY PROLONGED

    Because it appears that your deliberations are taking awhile, I would like to offer some suggestions to help you come to a decision.

    (The Court) (I) wish(es) you to continue your deliberations keeping in mind the following:

    1. You have a duty to discuss the evidence with each other. Your goal should be to reach an agreement;

    2. You must each decide for yourself, but you should consider the views of the other jurors with an open mind;

    3. You should not hesitate to re-examine your own views and change your opinion if you become convinced that you were wrong; and

    4. You should not change your mind just to agree with the other jurors or just to return a verdict.

    Notes on Use 1. By order of the Supreme Court, as reported in 1 COLO. LAWYER 185 (Feb. 1972), if “it

    appears that a jury has been unable to agree, the trial court may in its discretion require the jury to continue its deliberations and may give” the jury an instruction containing the substance of this instruction.

    2. The Court’s order further provides that “[a] jury shall be discharged by the trial judge without having agreed upon a verdict if it appears to the trial judge that there is no reasonable probability of agreement.” For the factors the trial court should consider in deciding whether to discharge the jury rather than give this instruction, because of the lack of any reasonable probability of agreement, see People v. Schwartz, 678 P.2d 1000