Ask HR: Am I required to pay Jury Duty time away?


Dear HR, We just had our first jury duty situation come up for one of our employees.  My employee is paid hourly and works during the day, so, jury duty would occur during her shift.  Am I required to pay her?  May I count this as PTO, Vacation or Sick leave?  Please help!

HR Answer: Both Federal and State wage and hour laws require all hourly and non-exempt employees be paid for all hours worked.  An employer is not required to pay an employee for hours not worked when the employee takes leave to serve as a juror. Many employers do offer regular pay as a benefit when an employee is absent from work for jury duty in order to encourage their employees to fulfill an important societal and civic obligations. 

However, Employers are also prohibited from requiring employees to use PTO, vacation leave, sick leave or any other annual leave for time spent in responding to a jury summons.    

NOTE: There are different requirements for salaried exempt employees. In order for salary exempt employees to remain exempt, they must receive their full salary for any workweek in which work is performed.  An employer may NOT reduce an exempt employee’s salary if they are absent for jury duty.

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