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Jury Duty and PTO

Can an employer require an employee to use PTO to serve jury duty?

The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which establishes compensation guidelines for employees, does not require covered employers to pay non-exempt employees for hours not worked including time off from work to serve on a jury. Exempt employees, on the other hand, must receive their full predetermined salary for any week during which work is performed. The only applicable exception is to offset amounts employees receive as jury duty fees.

The federal Jury System Improvements Act prohibits employers from threatening, coercing, or discharging an employee because of jury duty. Time off to serve on a jury is not considered vacation time and cannot be treated as such. Forcing an employee to use his paid time off accruals for jury duty is penalizing him for serving on a jury. Such a negative employment action is not permitted under federal and many state laws.

An employee may choose to use his paid time off accruals to cover the time spent for jury duty. However, again, he may not be forced to use PTO.

This entry was posted on Friday, July 10th, 2015 at 9:08 pm and is filed under
Labor Laws.
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