Jury Duty

Editor's Note: Be sure to comply with state jury duty laws.

Melissa S. BurdorfOverview: Juries are critical to the functioning of the US legal system. In order to ensure jury participation, federal and state laws require that employers allow eligible employees to participate in jury service without the risk of termination, demotion or other unfavorable (adverse) employment action. Employees must be reinstated to their positions upon the conclusion of jury duty.

Generally, employers may ask employees to provide prompt notification of the need for leave and may request documentation of the need, such as a jury summons or a letter from the court clerk. The amount of time an employee spends on jury duty is not in the employer's control; rather, it varies based on the court proceeding. Employers should have a written policy that sets the parameters of an employee's absence for jury duty or court appearances (e.g., as a witness). The policy should be clearly communicated to all employees. Multistate employers may want to have a policy that follows the state law with the greatest benefit to employees.

Trends: On top of jury duty leave and witness leave, some states also provide for crime victim's leave and/or domestic violence leave. Generally, these laws require employers to provide employees with an unpaid leave of absence when the employee is the victim of a crime or domestic violence (or is a representative or family member of the victim), in order for the employee to participate in court proceedings related to the crime.

Author: Melissa S. Burdorf, JD, Legal Editor

Latest items in Jury Duty

  • Jury Duty and Witness Duty Leave Handbook Statement: Hawaii

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Hawaii employers should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of jury duty leave and to demonstrate compliance with Illinois' jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement: Minnesota

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Minnesota employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for service as a juror and to demonstrate their compliance with Minnesota's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement: Connecticut

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Connecticut employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for service as a juror and to show their compliance with Connecticut's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement [1-9 Employees]: Oregon

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Oregon employers with fewer than 10 employees seeking to educate employees about the availability of jury duty leave and demonstrate compliance with Oregon's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement [10+ Employees]: Oregon

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Oregon employers with 10 or more employees seeking to educate employees about the availability of jury duty leave and demonstrate compliance with Oregon's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement [11+ Employees]: District of Columbia

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    District of Columbia employers with 11 or more employees that seek to educate employees about the availability of jury duty leave, which must be paid for certain full-time employees, and to demonstrate compliance with the District of Columbia's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement [1-10 Employees]: District of Columbia

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    District of Columbia employers with fewer than 11 employees that seek to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of unpaid jury duty leave and to demonstrate their compliance with the District of Columbia's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement: New Mexico

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    New Mexico employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for service as a juror and to show their compliance with New Mexico's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Handbook Statement: North Carolina

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    North Carolina employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for service as a juror and to show their compliance with North Carolina's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.