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JSIA in Hawaii

Posted by Diane

The Jury Systems Improvement Act is a federal Act that pertains to employees in states across the country, including employees that reside and work in the state of Hawaii. The Act is in place to help ensure that if an employee is called to serve on a jury, the employee can serve without worrying about discrimination from the employer.

Employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees that serve on a jury, according to the JSIA. Employers also cannot terminate an employee that serves on a jury. In the event that an employer either terminates an employee or discriminates against an employee for serving on a jury, the employer could be fined up to $1,000 per instance, per employee, and the employer could be required to pay for lost wages and benefits to the employee.

In some cases, an employee will be able to postpone jury duty service for his or her own reasons. For example, if the employee has a planned vacation, he or she could postpone the service. However, these reasons must not have anything to do with coercion from the employer.

Employees that serve on a jury should also receive benefits while they are serving, such as health insurance. At the end of the period of service, the employee should be able to return to work to have the same job, salary and benefits that she or he had prior to taking time off for jury duty service.

Employers are allowed to require proof of the jury duty service. For example, the employee may have to provide a copy of the jury duty summons. Alternatively, the employee could obtain a letter from the clerk of the court for each day that the employee served on a jury. Employees should return to work when they are not serving on a jury. CB

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