What Duties Are Required of Citizens by Law?

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U.S. citizens are required to pay taxes, obey laws, serve as witnesses in court trials and serve on juries when called. Male citizens are required to register for the military draft within 30 days of turning 18 years old. Women are not required to register for the draft as of 2014.

Tax payments to the government pay for common services that benefit all citizens, including police and fire protection, roads, prisons, schools, state parks and the military. The United States levies a variety of taxes, including state and federal income taxes, social security tax, sales tax and property tax.

Everyone living in the United States is required to obey local, state and federal laws. Police officers and courts enforce laws, and there are penalties of varying degrees of severity for breaking laws.

U.S. citizens are required to testify in court proceedings if summoned. Every U.S. citizen of legal age has the right to a trial by jury, which requires that citizens serve as jurors. Names of jurors are randomly selected from lists of registered voters and drivers' license registrations. Individuals selected for jury duty must attend court proceedings for as long as required.

Most male U.S. citizens and immigrants ages 18 through 25 must register with the U.S. Selective Service for possible military draft. In the event of a draft, men are called according to a random lottery.