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Tompkins County Courts


Commissioner of Jurors

Employer Information

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To the Employer:

If your employee has been summoned for jury duty, please be aware that he or she has an obligation under state law to serve. The following sections from the New York State Judiciary Law provide the authority for jury service, the prohibition against penalizing jurors for their service and the basis for payment of the jury fees. For further information see the Juror Handbook.

New York State Consolidated Laws

 

New York State Consolidated Laws

Judiciary Law Article 16 §500. Declaration of policy.

It is the policy of this state that all litigants in the courts of this state entitled to trial by jury shall have the right to grand and petit juries selected at random from a fair cross-section of the community in the county or other governmental subdivision wherein the court convenes; and that all eligible citizens shall have the opportunity to serve on grand and petit juries in the courts of this state, and shall have an obligation to serve when summoned for that purpose, unless excused.

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Judiciary Law Article 16 §519. Right of juror to be absent from employment.

Any person who is summoned to serve as a juror under the provisions of this article and who notifies his or her employer to that effect prior to the commencement of a term of service shall not, on account of absence from employment by reason of such jury service, be subject to discharge or penalty. An employer may, however, withhold wages of any such employee serving as a juror during the period of such service; provided that an employer who employs more than ten employees shall not withhold the first forty dollars of such juror`s daily wages during the first three days of jury service. Withholding of wages in accordance with this section shall not be deemed a penalty. Violation of this section shall constitute a criminal contempt of court punishable pursuant to section seven hundred fifty of this chapter.

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Judiciary Law Article 16 §521. Fees and travel expenses of jurors.

(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b) of this section, trial and grand jurors in each court of the unified court system, except town and village courts, shall be entitled to an allowance equal to the sum of forty dollars per day for each and every day of physical attendance wherein the court convenes, except that no person who is employed shall be entitled to receive such allowance if, pursuant to section five hundred nineteen of this article, his or her employer is prohibited from withholding the first forty dollars of wages of such person during such period and such person`s daily wages equal or exceed forty dollars. If such person`s daily wages are less than forty dollars, he or she shall be entitled to receive an allowance hereunder equal to the difference between forty dollars and the amount of his or her daily wages. Such fees and those expenses actually and necessarily incurred in providing food and lodging for jurors shall be a state charge payable out of funds appropriated to the office of court administration for that purpose.
(b) No employee shall be entitled to receive the per diem allowance authorized by subdivision (a) of this section for any regularly scheduled workday on which jury service is rendered if, on such day, his or her wages are not withheld on account of such service.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, a trial or grand juror may waive entitlement to the allowance authorized by subdivision (a) of this section. In such event the amount of such allowance shall be available to the chief administrator of the courts solely for the purposes specified in paragraph (m) of subdivision two of section two hundred twelve of this chapter, except that any such amounts not expended in such fashion as of the close of the fiscal year in which they became available shall be transferred by the comptroller to the supplemental jury facilities fund established pursuant to section ninety-four-c of the state finance law.

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Judiciary Law Article 16 §521-a. Fees of trial jury.

In any action or special proceeding in a court of the unified court system that requires a juror`s physical attendance for more than thirty days, the court, by an order entered into the minutes, shall notify the commissioner of jurors of such service. The commissioner of jurors, upon receipt of such order and upon verification of such service by the clerk of the court shall, upon conclusion of such service, authorize as an additional allowance, the sum of six dollars per day for each and every day of physical attendance in excess of thirty days, wherein the court convenes. Such fees shall be a state charge payable out of funds appropriated to the office of court administration for the purpose.

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Judiciary Law Article 16 §524. Disqualification of former jurors.

(a) A person who has served on a grand or petit jury in any court of the unified court system or in a federal court shall not be competent to serve again as a trial or grand juror in any court of the unified court system for four years subsequent to the last day of such service, provided, however, that any person who serves on a grand or petit jury for more than ten days shall not be competent to serve again as a trial or grand juror for a period equal to the period authorized by this subdivision or subdivision (c) of this section, as appropriate, plus four years.
(b) Nothing contained in this section shall invalidate a verdict returned by trial jury or an indictment returned by a grand jury when such trial or grand jury includes one or more trial or grand jurors not competent by virtue of such previous service.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (a) of this section, if the commissioner of jurors, after consultation with and concurrence of the district administrative judge or judges, or in the counties with-in the city of New York the deputy chief administrative judge, shall determine that:
(i) compliance with the requirements of subdivision (a) of this section would be impracticable, the commissioner may reduce the period of incompetency to two years; or
(ii) the period of incompetency for all jurors pursuant to subdivision (a) of this section may be extended without interfering with the commissioner`s ability to comply with the provisions of section five hundred eight of this article, the commissioner may increase the period of incompetency.
(d) Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the period during which a person shall not be competent to serve as a trial or grand juror pursuant to this section shall be one-half the period specified in subdivision (a) or (c) of this section, as appropriate, where such person so requests on a form to be provided by the commissioner of jurors. Such a request may be submitted at any time during the period of incompetency.

 

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