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If you want to know whether you can get paid for Jury duty, this article is going to be very helpful.
It reveals a lot about jury duty and how anyone can get paid. It also reveals the states that really pay!
What or Who is a Jury?
A cornerstone of the judicial system in America when rendering a verdict is a group of individuals known as jurors.
These individuals are sworn by their oath to render an impartial verdict when the evidence has been argued.
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The verdict is based entirely upon the facts that are presented by the prosecutor and defended by the defense counsel.
Juries originated in England in the Middle Ages.
The reason why a typical jury is comprised of 12 individuals is that a Welsh king, who established jury trials in 725 A.D. took the number 12 because the founder of Christianity, Jesus, had 12 disciples.
Tale of Two Types of Juries
Interestingly, there are two jury pools from which a citizen of the United States of America may be called to serve.
One is at the local or county level in which an individual may be called to serve as a juror for a trial that is being conducted within their geographical area.
An individual may also be called to serve on a federal jury. Generally, federal jurists will be impaneled to hear federal adjudicated cases where a United States Attorney will bring charges against an individual.
Of added interest is that a federal grand jury consists of anywhere of 16 to 23 members. Of these jurors, it takes 12 to indict.
Generally, a federal grand jury will be called upon hear criminal, civil, and bankruptcy cases.
Do You Get Paid for Jury Duty?
Yes, you do get paid for jury duty but it will depend on the state and your circumstances. Keep reading and you will learn exactly how much each state is required to pay.
One of the rights and privileges of being a citizen in most countries, especially in America, is to have a trial by jury.
These juries are comprised of one’s peers and do their civic duty by listening to both the defense and the prosecutor. Their role is to weigh the evidence as to whether the individual being on trial is guilty or not.
In addition to this right of being judged by one’s peers, is the privilege of serving as a juror.
As an American citizen, there is no age exception for being summoned and serving as a juror.
However, there are potential exemptions if an individual is over 70 years of age and has a medical condition with an accompanying doctor’s note. They may be excused from jury duty.
How Much Do You Get Paid for Jury Duty and States Required to Pay Employees
The state of Alabama requires the employer to allow an employee to be part of the jury selection and if chosen to be a jurist.
Employers, regardless of work required, must allow this civic duty to be accomplished.
In addition, an employer in the state of Alabama is required to pay the employee their regular wage for the working hours spent at jury selection or jury duty.
The only exception to this hard and fast law is if the employer can demonstrate a hardship. If the case is made release from jury duty may be considered.
In addition, the selected jurist would also receive jury duty pay from the state of Alabama and potential reimbursement for any travel.
Employers within the state of Colorado are mandated by law to allow their employees to serve as jurists if summoned.
Colorado defines eligible employees summoned to jury duty as part-time, temporary, full-time, and casual employees.
If they have been an employee for a minimum of three months before the summons they are eligible to receive their normal compensation from their employer.
Employers are to pay these employees up to a maximum of $50 per day for their jury service. The maximum number of days is capped at three days.
Additionally, the state of Colorado will authorize jury duty pay for those individuals who serve on a jury.
Additional consideration will be given to those individuals who need mileage reimbursement
Employees in the state of Connecticut are eligible to be paid by their employers. The employees need to be working a minimum of 30 hours or more and are not classified as casual or temporary employees.
The employer is obligated to pay the employee who has been summoned for a maximum of five days. This payment is at the individual’s regular wage
Additionally, the state of Connecticut reimburses the jurist at a maximum amount of $50.
If an employee is categorized as part-time or casual they will be reimbursed for any out-of-pocket expenses related to their summons.
This reimbursement will be up to a maximum of five days. The mileage will be paid at a set amount multiplied by the number of miles.
Also, any out-of-pocket childcare expenses and parking of their vehicle may be reimbursable. Food is not included.
The range of reimbursement from the state of Connecticut is no less than $20 and no more than $50.
There are a handful of states that required employers to pay the wages of employees serving on jury duty. Louisiana has taken this one step further.
Not only does the state of Louisiana require employers to pay their employees if selected to be part of the jury but they also require that the employer pay the employee during the selection process.
The law in this southern state also requires that the employee not lose any personal leave, sick time, vacation, or other benefits as a result of being involved with jury duty.
Additionally, the state of Louisiana reimburses a jury member for every day that they serve on the panel. Additional reimbursements include the possibility of travel expenses.
Similar to the state of Louisiana, Massachusetts, by law, requires the employer to allow the employee time off for the jury duty process.
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State law requires the employer to pay their employee throughout the whole jury duty process. This includes the actual selection process and if impaneled.
By definition, an employee in the state is defined as an individual who works temporarily, is employed casually, part-time or full-time employee.
The only caveat is that an employee must have been working with the company three months before their being summoned.
In addition, the state of Massachusetts allows for a nominal reimbursement to individuals if they are selected as a jurist. Other potential reimbursements include travel expenses.
In the state of Nebraska, if an employee is called to report for jury duty, employers must pay their normal wage for these employees if they are selected to be a member of the jury.
In addition, an employee who goes through the selection process of putting together a jury is also paid for those hours that he or she is away from work.
An option that the employer may exercise is to deduct any reimbursement from the state of Nebraska paid to the jurist.
This deduction can be their wage minus the reimbursement and therefore the net is paid hourly to the employee.
7. New York
In the state of New York employers pay their employees for the time associated with a jury selection process.
However, a slight variation exists for employers of this state in that they only need to provide the first $40 of the employee earning.
This wage requirement is up until and including the first three days of their jury obligation.
Consequently, an employer in the state of New York is not required to provide any payment to their employees beyond that first $40.
If selected for jury duty, the state will provide a small compensation to the individual. Mileage reimbursement for travel expenses is also provided.
Also See: How to Get Paid for Junk Removal… and save the planet in the process!
When an employee receives the summons to be involved with the selection of a jury, they are required to notify their employer the following day after being notified.
By Tennessee law, the employer is required to pay that employee for their civil service. The normal wage is paid to the individual if they are selected to be a member of the jury.
The employer is also required to reimburse the employee for their round-trip time committed to traveling to the courthouse to serve as a jurist.
However, an employer in the state of Tennessee has the option of deducting from the individual’s wage any compensation received from the state paid to the individual for their service.
9. District of Columbia
Payment to employees is required by the District of Columbia for their involvement in a jury trial.
Full regular wages are mandated to be paid to the employee minus any nominal fees that are paid to the member of the jury by the District of Columbia.
This requirement to be paid by an employer is maximized at five days when the employee serves as a jurist.
Additionally, if the selected jurist serves as a member of a jury on a particular day that they would not have otherwise worked, they are not eligible for that daily pay.
One additional exception to the mandate of employers paying employees is that any company that has 10 or fewer employees is not required to provide compensation for those employees serving on a jury.
States and Employee Benefits for Jury Duty
Added to the mix of employer’s obligations to their employees as it relates to wages and benefits are 15 states that have further defined the obligation of employers to employees.
Specifically, in the states of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio, Houma, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia they cannot force their employees to utilize employee benefits.
Those employee benefits include sick time, paid leave, personal time, vacation time, etc.
State law prohibits the employers of these 15 states from forcing their employees to use these benefits for time off to be involved with the jury process.
As American citizens, we have certain rights guaranteed to us by the Constitution of the United States of America.
According to the sixth amendment, we have the right to a public trial, be represented by a lawyer, know who our accusers are, and stand before a jury of our peers when we have been accused of wrongdoing.
The jury system may be at times flawed but in most instances, it is powerful and beneficial to the American way of life.
Do You Get Jury Duty Pay FAQs
Does Jury Duty Excuse You From Work All Day Even Though Released Early?
The right and honest thing to do would be to go back to work and finish out your day if you are released from jury duty early.
Additionally, if you live in a state that mandates the employer to pay your wage, technically, not returning to work and still getting paid is a dishonest and fraudulent thing to do.
Do You Get Paid for Jury Duty if You Are Unemployed?
If you are receiving unemployment compensation then yes you should be able to receive benefits for duties performed as a jurist.
Variances will depend upon which state you reside in.
However, jury duty is considered work, and therefore possible compensation or minimum payment from the court system for time spent on the jury and possibly reimbursement of mileage may be a possibility.
Can You Be Excused From Jury Duty?
Yes you can be excused from jury duty based on a variety of reasons.
Some of those reasons could be medical hardship, out of public necessity, care for a dependent, military conflict, etc.
If we have received a jury duty notice, it is our privilege and duty as American citizens to undertake that solemn responsibility.
Additionally, although most of us would want to engage in this activity without any thought or hint of remuneration, it is still important that if it is afforded to us that we take advantage.
Therefore, it is important to know what your particular state allows as it relates to jury duty.
As American citizens not only do we have the right of being part of the jury system but standing on one’s rights as it relates to the payment obligations of the employer.
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