Jury duty worries

August 27, 2009
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Jury duty: it’s not glamorous, it can be time-consuming, and perhaps even boring, but it’s part of our duty as American citizens. A lot of people dread not only the process of being selected but possibly being seated for a long trial.

Being seated for a trial means you aren’t at work, which means you are losing money. What you get paid to serve doesn’t make up the difference, and some companies don’t pay you while you are gone. Many people worried about this before, but with the current economic situation, I wonder how many people try to dodge jury duty now

My “Lawyers” desk calendar had an entry this month of an actual jury selection transcript in which a potential juror told the court he didn’t want to serve because he didn’t want to be away from his job for too long. The court asked if they could do without him at work, to which the potential juror replied “Yes, but I don’t want them to know it.”

It’s a legitimate fear I’m sure a few people called to serve have: they don’t want their boss to find someone else to do their job while they are gone. If the company is looking to downsize, that could show that potential juror is expendable. Perhaps the potential juror is a small-business owner and has no one else to run the business.

You can’t be fired for serving on a jury, but perhaps down the road, when layoffs are coming, the boss will remember that someone else could do that juror’s job.

I’ve read a few articles this summer about people putting off vacations for the same reason.

Lawyers, how often are potential jurors asking to be excused because they are worried about getting time off or losing their jobs? Has it increased recently because of the economy?
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  1. I just wanted to point out that Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, Senator Feinstein, former Senate majority leader Bill Frist, and former attorney general John Ashcroft are responsible for this rubbish. We need to keep a eye on these corrupt, arrogant, and incompetent fools.

  2. Well I guess our politicians have decided to give these idiot federal prosecutors unlimited power. Now if I guy bounces a fifty-dollar check, the U.S. attorney can intentionally wait for twenty-five years or so and have the check swabbed for DNA and file charges. These power hungry federal prosecutors now have unlimited power to mess with people. we can thank Wisconsin's Jim Sensenbrenner and Diane Feinstein, John Achcroft and Bill Frist for this one. Way to go, idiots.

  3. I wonder if the USSR had electronic voting machines that changed the ballot after it was cast? Oh well, at least we have a free media serving as vicious watchdog and exposing all of the rot in the system! (Insert rimshot)

  4. Jose, you are assuming those in power do not wish to be totalitarian. My experience has convinced me otherwise. Constitutionalists are nearly as rare as hens teeth among the powerbrokers "managing" us for The Glorious State. Oh, and your point is dead on, el correcta mundo. Keep the Founders’ (1791 & 1851) vision alive, my friend, even if most all others, and especially the ruling junta, chase only power and money (i.e. mammon)

  5. Hypocrisy in high places, absolute immunity handed out like Halloween treats (it is the stuff of which tyranny is made) and the belief that government agents are above the constitutions and cannot be held responsible for mere citizen is killing, perhaps has killed, The Republic. And yet those same power drunk statists just reel on down the hallway toward bureaucratic fascism.

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