The Breakdown of NJ Jury Duty Laws
All U.S. citizens have a right to a fair and unbiased trial—that is why serving jury duty is an important civic obligation. If you were summoned for jury duty in the Garden State, you must familiarize yourself with the NJ jury duty laws. This article will tell you all about jury duty—how it works, how much it pays, and what the penalties for missing it are.
You can’t volunteer to be on a jury in NJ—prospective jurors are randomly selected by a computer from the lists of:
- Registered voters
- Licensed drivers
- Filers of NJ personal income tax returns
- Applicants for homestead rebates
After a prospective juror is selected, they get a green Juror Summons postcard containing summons information and the name of the website where the juror can complete a questionnaire. If you don’t have access to a computer, you can complete your questionnaire on paper and mail it back to the court.
This questionnaire helps the court determine whether you qualify to be a juror. To be eligible for jury service, you need to:
- Be a resident of New Jersey
- Have U.S. citizenship
- Be able to read, write, and understand English
- Be physically and mentally able to perform service
- Not be convicted of a felony
- Be at least 18 years old
After you receive your summons, you’ll need to check whether your services are needed. You can do so by visiting the Juror Reporting Page after 5 p.m. the evening before you are supposed to report for service.
Once you determine that the court needs your services, you will have to appear in court (adequately dressed) and go through the selection process where the judge and the attorneys ask you questions to learn whether you can be objective about the case.
New Jersey courts offer compensation of $5 per day for each day of service for petit jurors. If you have to serve for more than three days, your attendance fee will increase to $40 per day. Grand jurors are paid an attendance fee of $5 per day.
The most common questions about jury duty and employment are:
|Can I be exempt from jury duty because of work?||Having a job isn’t a reason enough to get you out of jury duty—if you don’t show up, you can be fined or held in contempt of court. You could request to be excused if serving jury duty would cause undue hardship for you or your employer|
|Can my employer fire me because I’m serving jury duty?||According to N.J.S.A 2B:20.17, your employer cannot penalize you in any way because of jury duty. The violation could result in:
|Is my employer required to pay me for jury duty?||There is no statutory requirement in New Jersey that obligates an employer to pay full salaries to their employees while serving jury duty|
When you start preparing for jury duty, the first step you should take is to notify your employer that you’ll miss out on work. If you don’t know how to do that, DoNotPay can help you by creating a leave request letter in a few steps. This letter will inform your employer of your absence and remind them of the laws protecting you.
Follow the steps below to get your leave request letter immediately:
- Open DoNotPay in any web browser
- Choose the Request Jury Duty Leave feature
- Provide information about:
- The place where you live
- Your workplace
- Dates of your jury service
- The court where you’re supposed to serve
- Add the photo of your jury summons
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