Voir dire is the only portion of the trial where the parties and their lawyers have the opportunity to pose questions to prospective jurors. This process is designed so that the parties can decide who they think should be the jurors in a particular case. The goal of jury selection is to seat a fair and impartial jury.
The questions that are asked during this process are not intended to embarrass anyone or unnecessarily pry into an individual’s personal affairs, but it is important that the parties and their attorneys know enough about a potential juror in order to determine who should serve as a juror.
There are no right or wrong answers to the questions that will be asked. It is extremely important to answer the questions as frankly and as honestly as possible. Potential jurors should not be afraid that an answer may offend one of the parties or lawyers. Remaining silent when a person has information he or she should disclose is the worst thing a potential juror could do.
Voir dire is a process designed to assist the parties and their attorneys to select a fair and impartial jury. If, for any reason, a potential juror does not think he or she can be a fair and impartial juror, the court and lawyers must be told about it.