Where an Employee has been summoned for Jury service the Employer should discuss with the Employee about the dates and duration of the jury service. The Employer needs to consider how their absence might affect the workplace during that period. Remember that the duration of the Employee’s summons may not be the actual time they spend serving as a juror. That’s because no-one can be sure exactly how long a trial will actually take. Rather, the duration on the summons is the time the Employee is required for the jury selection process.
It’s possible that the Employee may be absent from work for only a few hours over the course of one week. It’s also possible that they’ll be selected as a juror on a trial that takes longer than a week. If a longer time is likely, there’ll be a note on the Employee’s jury summons advising a time estimate. The law requires the Employer to let an Employee attend jury service. It’s every New Zealander’s legal right to serve and to be allowed the necessary time off work.
Where an Employee isn’t selected to be on a jury an Employee isn’t selected to be a juror on any given day, they should return to work if possible. However, they may still be selected on other days during the week of their summons. The Employee should check whether they’ll be needed at court on any day by phoning the court.
The Employer can expect staff to be at work on any days when they’re not needed at court. An Employer is not required to pay any Employees during their jury service. An Employee can postpone Jury service where it can be shown it will cause serious hardship for an Employer or Employee. If that’s the case, the Employee can apply to defer their service to a later date within 12 months of the original summons. The Employee must apply to the court using the response form. The registrar will respond within five working days of receiving the application.