Maryland Civil Jury Trials, Question 2 (2010)
The Maryland Civil Jury Trials Amendment, also known as Question 2, was on the November 2, 2010 ballot in Maryland as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved. The measure authorized the enactment of legislation to limit the right to a jury trial in a civil proceeding to those proceedings in which the amount in controversy exceeds $15,000.
- See also: 2010 ballot measure election results
Official results follow:
|Maryland Question 2 (2010)|
Election results via Maryland State Board of Elections
Text of measure
The ballot language that voters saw on their ballot read:
|“||Authorizing the enactment of legislation to limit the right to a jury trial in a civil proceeding to those proceedings in which the amount in controversy exceeds $15,000.
(Amending Maryland Declaration of Rights – Articles 5(a) and 23)
Under Articles 5 and 23 of the Maryland Declaration of Rights, a party in a civil proceeding has a right to a jury trial where the amount in controversy exceeds $10,000. In cases where the amount in controversy does not exceed this threshold amount, a judge, rather than a jury, determines the verdict. The constitutional amendment would increase the amount-in-controversy limitation by providing that a party may not demand a jury trial in a civil proceeding unless the amount in controversy exceeds $15,000, excluding attorney’s fees if attorney’s fees are recoverable in the proceeding.
For the Constitutional Amendment
Against the Constitutional Amendment 
The summary of the amendment read:
|“||Increasing from more than $10,000 to more than $15,000, the amount in controversy in civil proceedings in which the right to a trial by jury may be limited by legislation; and submitting the constitutional amendment to the qualified voters of the State for their adoption or rejection.||”|
If approved by the General Assembly, this constitutional amendment will be submitted to the voters at the 2010 general election. It is not expected to result in additional costs for local election boards.
There was no known supporting campaign for Question 2.
- According to Lynda Lambert, a college English instructor, in a column published by the Baltimore Chronicle and Sentinel, looked at both sides of the issue. She stated, "As someone who hates being called for jury duty in any case, I can see where raising this limit could help take some of the pressure off the need for so many jurors."
There was no known opposing campaign for Question 2.
- According to Lynda Lambert, a college English instructor, in a column published by the Baltimore Chronicle and Sentinel, looked at both sides of the issue. She stated, ."..as someone who would not have $10,000 if someone sued me for that amount, I’m pretty certain I’d like the option to bring in a jury if I didn’t like the cut of the judge’s jib."
Path to the ballot
The measure was first introduced to the Maryland State Senate on January 15, 2010, and was eventually passed with a vote of 32-13 on February 25, 2010. The measure was then sent to the Maryland House of Representatives and read for the first time on February 26, 2010 and was passed with a vote of 108-30 on April 1, 2010. Placing a proposed amendment on the ballot must be approved by a 60% vote of each chamber of the Maryland State Legislature. Maryland is one of nine states that allow a referred amendment to go on the ballot after this process.
- Maryland 2010 ballot measures
- 2010 ballot measures
- List of Maryland ballot measures
- History of Initiative & Referendum in Maryland
- Maryland State Board of Elections, "Constitutional Amendments," accessed June 3, 2014
- Maryland State Board of Elections, "2010 General Election Ballot Questions," accessed June 3, 2014
- Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
- General Assembly of Maryland, "Senate Bill 199," accessed June 3, 2014
<ref>tag; no text was provided for refs named
Cite error: Invalid
- Baltimore Chronicle, "Considering the Ballot Questions," November 1, 2010
- Maryland Legislature, "Senate Bill 119"
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