Tennessee Jury Duty/ Court Appearance laws & HR compliance analysis

Tennessee Jury Duty/ Court Appearance: What you need to know

Jury duty. It is unlawful for an employer to discharge, eliminate benefits, or otherwise penalize an employee for taking time off for jury duty as long as the employee shows the summons to his or her employer the day after receiving it.
The employee is entitled to time off from work for each day that jury duty exceeds 3 hours.
In addition, employees are excused from shiftwork that immediately precedes the first day of jury service and, thereafter, from shiftwork within 24 hours of the day of the jury service (TN Stat. Sec. 22-4-106).
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An employee who has been fired, demoted, or suspended in violation of this law is entitled to reinstatement, as well as lost wages and benefits. An employer that violates any of these provisions is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor (TN Stat. Sec. 22-4-106).
Exemptions. This law does not apply to employers that regularly employ fewer than 5 people or to temporary employees employed for fewer than 6 months.
Jury duty. Under Tennessee law, employers must pay their employees “usual compensation” for time spent serving and traveling to and from jury service.
The employer has the discretion to deduct any juror fee or expense payment received from the court (TN Stat. Sec. 22-4-106(b)).
If an employer regularly employs fewer than 5 employees, or if an employee has been employed for less than 6 months, the employer is not required to compensate the employee for jury service.
Court appearance. State law does not require employers to pay employees for absences caused by court appearances.
Best practices. Regardless of state law requirements, most employers do pay all employees called to jury duty or court appearances.
The prevailing attitude among employers is that an employee ...

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