Your guide to jury duty laws by state

By David Galic

Jul. 10, 2023


  • Federal law doesn’t require employers to provide employees leave, compensation, or benefits for jury duty-related absences.

  • Each state has its own jury duty policies and laws. 

  • There are a total of 10 states (plus the District of Columbia) that require employers to pay employees who are called to serve mandatory jury duty.

  • There are 15 states that explicitly prohibit employers from requiring employees to use paid vacation or any other personal leave types due to jury duty obligations.

While jury duty is legally required for those selected, most US citizens view it as not just a responsibility but also as an important civic function. According to Bar Prep Hero’s recent study, 60.2% believe jury duty should be mandatory for all citizens.

There are also those who would rather avoid it if possible. Bar Prep Hero’s survey found that 9.2% admitted that they lied during jury selection in order to get out of jury duty. The biggest reason why people want to avoid jury duty is that they see it as a financial inconvenience. 

When employees have to attend court for jury duty, they are unable to go to work for as long as the trial lasts. And even though employees are required by law to fulfill their jury duty if summoned, employers in a majority of states are not obligated to compensate them for working hours missed as a result of jury duty. 

Are you, as an employer, obligated to compensate or grant additional PTO to staff who are on jury leave? If you’re not sure, we’ve made a complete guide of jury duty laws by state to help you understand your legal obligations. 

How does jury duty work? 

Jury duty is not only a legal obligation but also an opportunity for American citizens to participate in their country’s judicial process firsthand. 

The jury selection process differs slightly depending on the jurisdiction, but it most commonly includes the following steps:

  • Summoning potential jurors: Potential jurors are randomly selected from a pool of eligible individuals. This pool is usually compiled from voter registration lists, driver’s license records, or other sources, depending on the jurisdiction.
  • Questionnaires: Potential jurors must complete questionnaires, answering basic questions about their occupation, educational background, and any potential biases or conflicts of interest. Diversity is an important factor when selecting juries. 
  • Jury panel selection: A group of potential jurors is called to the courtroom, and they are seated in the jury box. The judge and attorneys question potential jurors to determine their suitability for the case. The purpose is to identify any biases, prejudices, or personal experiences that could impact their ability to be impartial.

The judge and attorneys then select the final jurors who will serve on the jury for the trial. Their duty is to follow the trial proceedings — to listen to the evidence presented, witness testimonies, and arguments from both sides. Their duty is complete once the jury deliberates together and reaches a verdict based on the evidence and instructions provided by the judge.

While the length of your jury duty depends on the complexity of the trial, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts claims that most people finish their jury duty in a matter of one to three days in that state. Once a person has served jury duty, they will not be required to do so again for at least another three years. 

What federal laws say about employer responsibilities regarding jury duty 

According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), federal law doesn’t require employers to provide employees paid leave for jury duty or with compensation or benefits. 

However, state laws are a different matter. Some states require employers to pay an employee while they are serving jury duty. Many have laws protecting employees from being fired or penalized while serving jury duty. Several have laws requiring employers to allow employees to use their paid time off (PTO) if they wish to do so for jury service. 

Employers also have the ability to create their own jury duty policies for employees. For example, employers in states that don’t require them to compensate employees for jury duty could create their own policy that does offer compensation in order to stand out from competitors in terms of employee benefits. 

Jury duty laws by state

Most employees don’t know what the laws are in their state regarding jury duty. That’s why it’s important for human resources (HR) professionals to have a full understanding of their legal requirements regarding jury duty leave, as well as their company’s specific policies, if any exist. 

A total of 10 states (plus the District of Columbia) require employers to pay employees who are called to serve mandatory jury duty:

  1. Alabama
  2. Colorado
  3. Connecticut
  4. Florida (Browerd County and Miami-Dade County) 
  5. Georgia
  6. Louisiana
  7. Massachusetts 
  8. Nebraska
  9. New York
  10. Tennessee 


There are also 15 states that explicitly prohibit employers from requiring employees to use any personal leave to fulfill their jury duty obligations.

  1. Alabama
  2. Arizona
  3. Arkansas
  4. Indiana
  5. Louisiana
  6. Mississippi 
  7. Missouri
  8. Nebraska
  9. Nevada
  10. New Mexico
  11. Ohio
  12. Oklahoma
  13. Utah 
  14. Vermont
  15. Virginia


Even though not every state mandates that employees be paid when serving jury duty, every state has laws against employers discharging or penalizing employers for serving jury duty — or threatening to do so. 

For quick reference, check this table to see if your state mandates employers to pay for employee jury duty absences and if employees are required by law to use personal time off for jury duty. 

State Are employers mandated to pay for jury duty absences? Can employers require employees to use their PTO for jury duty?
Alabama Yes No
Alaska No Yes
Arizona No No
Arkansas No No
California No Yes
Colorado Yes Yes
Connecticut Yes Yes
Delaware No Yes
D.C.  Yes Yes
Florida Yes (Broward and Miami-Dade Counties) Yes
Georgia Yes Yes
Hawaii No Yes
Idaho No Yes
Illinois No Yes
Indiana No No
Iowa No Yes
Kansas No Yes
Kentucky No Yes
Louisiana Yes No
Maine No Yes
Maryland No Yes
Massachusetts  Yes Yes
Michigan  No Yes
Minnesota No Yes
Mississippi No No
Missouri No No
Montana No Yes
Nebraska Yes No
Nevada No No
New Hampshire No Yes
New Jersey  No Yes
New Mexico No No
New York Yes Yes
North Carolina No Yes
North Dakota No Yes
Ohio No No
Oklahoma No No
Oregon No Yes
Pennsylvania No Yes
Rhode Island No Yes
South Carolina No Yes
South Dakota No Yes
Tennessee Yes  Yes
Texas No Yes
Utah No No
Vermont No No
Virginia No No
Washington No Yes
West Virginia No Yes
Wisconsin No Yes
Wyoming No Yes


Here’s a more in-depth look at some states that have more specific jury duty laws:


Alabama state law requires employers to grant paid leave for jury duty to full-time employees. To be eligible for paid leave, the employee must show their employer the jury summons on the next workday after receiving it. 

If a company has five or fewer full-time employees, only one employee can serve jury duty at a time. The court will automatically postpone or reschedule jury duty if a second employee is summoned during the same time. 


Colorado laws require employers to pay employees up to $50 per day for the first three trial days of jury duty unless the employer has a policy in which they are obligated to pay more. This law includes not just full-time salaried employees but also part-time, temporary, and casual employees. 


Connecticut laws stipulate that employers must pay full-time employees regular wages for the first five days of jury service. The only way employers can be excused from paying is by submitting an application to the Chief Court Administrator with proof of sufficient financial hardship. 

District of Columbia 

District of Columbia laws require employers to provide employees with leave to serve jury duty. However, the laws don;t requires employers to offer paid leave.


There is no state law in Florida that requires employers to pay employees for jury duty. However, there are several county ordinances that do. In Broward County, employees must be paid a regular salary for up to five days of jury duty-related leave, provided that the employee gives a copy of the summons to their immediate supervisor at least five days before the first day of scheduled jury duty. 

In Miami-Dade County, employers must pay employees for jury service if: 

  • The employee has a regularly scheduled workweek of at least 35 hours.
  • The employee provides a copy of the summons at least five working days prior. 
  • The employee is serving their jury duty in Miami-Dade County.
  • The employer has 10 or more full-time employees.
  • The employer has offices or does business in Miami-Dade County.


Even though Georgia laws do not require employers to offer paid leave for jury service, the Attorney General issued an opinion in 1989 interpreting a statute as requiring employers to pay employees for jury service leave. 

Therefore, employers must pay regular salaries to employees serving jury duty. 


According to Louisiana laws, the employer is required to pay wages to employees serving jury duty but only for a single day of service. 


In Massachusetts, employers must pay employees at the regular rate for the first three days of jury duty. This includes part-time, temporary, and casual employees.


Nebraska laws require employers to pay employees full wages during jury duty. 


In Nevada, employers are not required to pay any wages for time spent serving on a jury. However, they can’t require staff to work within eight hours of the time they’re supposed to serve. 

Also, on the day of jury duty, employees can’t be required to work between 5:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m.

New York

According to New York State laws, employers with ten or more employees must pay the first $40 of the employee’s regular daily wages for the first three days of jury duty. 


In Oregon, it’s common for employers to have internal policies that mandate regular pay for employees on jury duty; however, it is not legally required by the state.


Tennessee laws mandate that employers who have five or more employees must pay for time spent serving jury duty as long as the employee has been with the company for at least six months. 

Create your own jury duty policies

All employers have the ability to create their own jury duty compensation policies regardless of what state laws mandate.

If you’re looking to develop your own employer policy, here are a few key areas to consider: 

  • Legal obligations: Familiarize yourself with the state laws and regulations pertaining to jury duty. Understand the rights of employees and any legal obligations you have as an employer to accommodate them.
  • Criteria to qualify: Establish a process to verify employee eligibility for jury duty. Typically, employees may be required to provide a copy of their jury duty summons or a letter from the court confirming their selection. 
  • Leave policies: Outline the specific time-off policies for employees serving on jury duty very clearly. For example, if you give them paid days off, determine whether jury duty days count against their PTO total. 
  • Compensation: Decide how you will handle compensation. Determine whether employees will continue to receive their regular salary or another fixed amount per day. 

Once created, focus on clearly communicating your policy to employees. Ensure they understand their rights and responsibilities related to jury duty and how the company will support them during their absence.

Consider expressing support and encouragement to employees who are serving on juries. Acknowledging the importance of their participation in the legal system will help foster a positive work environment that values civic engagement.

Manage jury duty absences easily with

Once you have developed your jury duty policy, it’s important to maintain accurate records of employees’ jury duty absences, leave taken, and any related compensation or benefits provided to help ensure compliance with legal requirements and facilitate fair treatment across the company.

Contact us today to learn how can help you easily comply with your state’s jury duty leave policies.

Schedule, engage, and pay your staff in one system with