Everyone in the United States over the age of 18 is required to perform jury duty unless they qualify for an excuse or an exemption. Notice of jury duty can come by mail at any time, and no matter how inconvenient the timing may be, you are required to serve in the state of Nevada when summoned. If, however, you are unable to attend for a legitimate reason outlined by the state, then you should not be fined for your absence.
If you missed jury duty without giving a reason, you will be forced to attend court and show cause as to why you were not present. If you are not able to show cause, then you could face fines and be charged with contempt of court. If you recently missed jury duty, contact the criminal defense lawyers of De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers and let us help you avoid facing any unnecessary penalties.
Nevada Jury Duty Laws
Jury duty is mandated by the state of Nevada for everyone over the age of 18. However, there are many exemptions and excuses that could prevent you from having to serve on a jury. If you have a legitimate legal excuse or exemption (as defined in Chapter 6 of the Nevada state law) you must prove as much with a sworn affidavit.
You would be exempt from serving jury duty if:
- You do not have sufficient knowledge of the English language
- You have been convicted of treason, a felony, or an infamous crime
- You are incapable due to a mental or physical infirmity
- You are a member or employee of the Legislature in session
- You have a fictitious address due to being a victim of domestic violence, human trafficking, or another situation defined in NRS 217.462
- You are a police officer
- You are over age 70
- You are over age 65 and live more than 65 miles from the court where you would have to appear
These are the only exemptions from service, although there are certain grounds excusing a juror as defined by NRS 6.030. These excuses are temporary, and it is the juror’s responsibility to prove that they qualify for an excuse.
Temporary excuses include:
- Sickness or physical disability
- Serious illness or death of a juror’s immediate family member
- Undue hardship or extreme inconvenience
- Public necessity
- You are the primary caregiver of someone with a documented medical condition that needs assistance at all times
If you are temporarily excused, the court can direct you to appear for jury service at another time or once it is deemed that you no longer qualify for that excuse.
Consequences for Missing Jury Duty
If you fail to show up for scheduled jury service, you will be ordered to appear before the court and show cause as to why you were not able to attend. You will be held responsible for proving that you meet one of the conditions that would warrant an excuse or an exemption from jury duty.
If you fail to show cause, you will be held in contempt of court and fined up to $500.
Taking Off Work for Jury Duty
Nevada state law mandates that your employer allow you to miss work for jury service. NRS 6.190 states that if an employer terminates or threatens to terminate you for attending jury duty, they can be charged with a gross misdemeanor. Not only must an employer allow you to miss work, but they also can’t require you to use sick leave, vacation time, or work certain hours.
Your employer will be notified if you are summoned for jury duty. In that notification, all information pertaining to penalties for firing you are listed. You must still notify your employer at least three days prior to needing to appear for jury duty. If you don’t, it could affect your ability to file a lawsuit against your employer in the event of termination.
Recovering Damages if You are Terminated for Attending Jury Duty
Nevada makes it very clear that work is not an excuse or reason for exemption from jury duty. Because of this, they have created laws that explain what happens if your employer terminates you for jury duty. If you are terminated, you may take civil action against your employer and obtain:
- Lost wages and benefits
- An order of reinstatement at the same pay and position as prior to the termination
- Attorney’s fees
- Punitive damages that do not exceed $50,000
If you are terminated for attending jury service, a Nevada lawyer can help you recover damages from your employer.
Contact De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers Today
There is no convenient time to be presented with a summons for jury duty. However, it is a requirement in Nevada unless you qualify for an exemption or an excuse. If you miss jury duty without proper cause, then you are subject to a fine and could be found in contempt of court. In the event that you are facing a court date and you believe that you have a valid excuse or exemption, contact us for legal counsel.
At De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers, we want to ensure that you are treated fairly. We do not want to see your record harmed because you missed jury service. If you missed jury duty and have a legitimate reason for doing so, then you should not be treated like a criminal. When you are looking for answers on how to proceed after missing jury duty, contact our criminal defense lawyer in Nevada and schedule your consultation today.