Jury service leave

Employees, summoned for jury service, are entitled to leave from their workplace to fulfil their jury duty. The Ministry of Justice administers jury service.

How jury service works

If an employee is called up for jury service, they are required by law to attend, and their job is protected while they do so. Their employer must allow them to attend jury service.

However, if the employee’s absence from work causes difficulty because of special commitments or responsibilities they may have, they can apply to be excused or to have their service deferred, for which their employer can provide them with a letter of support.

An employee cannot be dismissed or have their position threatened for attending jury service. If they are, they can bring a personal grievance against their employer, who could receive a fine of up to $10,000.

Personal grievances

It is illegal for an employer to require their employees to use their to cover time off for jury duty.

Getting paid during jury service

Those who attend jury service receive a small attendance fee from the Ministry of Justice.

Employers do not have to pay their employees while they are on jury service, but many choose to ‘top up’ the money they get from the Ministry of Justice so that their employees receive their normal pay.

Employees should check their and workplace policies – or talk to their employer – to see if they can get a ‘top-up’.

Employers are encouraged to include a clause relating to jury service in employment agreements.

Employment Agreement Builder - Business.govt.nz(external link)

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