Should being a full time student be an excuse out of jury duty?

The title pretty much says it all.

As a college student, it seems that every week someone is missing because they have jury duty. Hell, I’ve been called every. single. year (if you don’t get picked for a trial, you are up again right away). Now, our professors are obligated to help us make up what we missed, but certain things like entire lectures are pretty hard to catch up on.

As it stands, being a student is not an excuse out of jury duty. The most they will do for you is give you an extension and reschedule the week, but that’s it.

So, should status as a full time student be a legitimate excuse to get out of jury duty?

What’s funnier (anecdotally, I suppose) to me is that I’ve yet to have a single friend or classmate put on a jury- the attorneys seem to dismiss almost all of the either liberal or college educated folks there.

No, it shouldn’t be. Stuff happens at real jobs that can’t be made up, either.

I believe very few things should exempt someone from jury duty; being a full-time student isn’t one of them. Sure, a student might miss that one important lecture, but employees might miss that one important meeting. It’s always a sacrifice, and it’s always worth it.

As compared to what? Full time workers?

From my experience, the time when I was a student would have been the easiest time for me to have been a juror. I could have done the homework at the end of the day, gotten notes from classmates, tape recorded lectures…
it would have been a disruption, but not that bad given how flexible students’ schedules are.

No, definitely not…everyone has a lot going on in their lives…if students were exempt, you’d have to exempt full-time workers & full-time parents, too, which wouldn’t leave very many people.

I think if you’re too young to drink, you’re too young to be a juror. 'Cause if I was on a jury, I would need to drink.

Its a legitimate excuse here in Ireland. I used it last year when I was called up.

I’m in the middle of going through a selection process, and I’m pretty sure the judge considered being an active student a justifiable excuse. This trial is going to be 2 months long, which might have something to do with it. There were quite a few students on my last jury, but that was during winter break, and the trial was relatively short.

Employers are expected to work around someone being away. In NJ, full time mothers were excused. But there are plenty of classes, like labs, which can’t be tape recorded, and I suspect the policy was set before notes were on a website.

Since you are in CA, you should be able to ask for a deferral for summertime, spring break, xmas vacation, etc. I know I can.

Look – you can usually ask for a deferral no matter what the job. Once I was called for jury duty during the busiest time of the year for us. I called the Commissioner of Jurors, and they rescheduled a couple of months later.

Try calling. They usually don’t mind if you postpone it; it only is an issue if you try to avoid it.

Employers have a duty and an obligation, to themselves even if to no-one else, to cover for absence. Whether it’s sickness, maternity or jury duty. There’s not a direct parallel with students, because the primary function of a student isn’t to fulfull a role in an organisation, but to actually be a student for themselves. You don’t go to that meeting to better yourself, you do it to do well for your company. Anything else is a bonus.

FWIW, in the UK, self-employed people mostly can make a case for exemption, and the logic is similar. They’re not one part of a larger organisation, they’re an individual directly earning their own living. There’s an immense difference.

It is here in Texas. I got called on for it one year and one of the maybe three excuses you could use was being a full-time student. Thank god, too; I would’ve missed a final.

Should it be? I donno. Personally I think it’s very important to have educated people around, and I think the right to a fair trial is very important as well. It’s a tough call, but I think it’s my state’s small way of encouraging higher education… “we don’t fuck with you while you’re getting smart.”

I would say full-time student status should not be an excuse by itself, but obligations as a student, even part-time, should be considered if they are sufficient. For example, students should be able to defer if they have exams scheduled that can’t be easily made up. Or if a grad student has a thesis or dissertation defense scheduled, that should probably be considered. Also, professors should respect a student who fulfills jury duty obligations and accommodate the student in making up work.

I got picked when I was a student, and they deferred me to the summertime. Unfortunately, I was also taking summer classes. The judge said that she couldn’t completely excuse me, but she blocked the dates I had exams and said that if a trial came up that would last more than a few days, she’d keep me out of it. I ended up on the jury for a one-day trial and I was called but not picked for another.

Around here jurors tend to get called in more days that not; I guess it’s because we have a high ratio of criminal proceedings to qualified jurors. They ended up letting me out last year because it would have essentially shut down our practice for the duration, meaning my staff would have been out of work and our patients wouldn’t get seen. I felt bad about it, but there wasn’t a good way around it.

That’s odd, I live in CA and got a notice for Jury duty twice in college. I filled out a part of the form that said I was a student and didn’t hear from them.

I got another notice a year out of college, but my number was not picked. Guess I lucked out.

My mom gets called every single year (whatever the minimum amount of time required before they can call you again). She’s served on Juries several of those times.

Are employers required to compensate you for the time you miss work? I work part-time, and don’t get vacation/sick leave. If I have to be gone a week to serve on a jury that’s a week’s pay I’m not earning which, in my currently precarious position could affect whether I pay my bills/rent on time. Could a tenant get evicted if they were unable to pay rent because Jury duty sucked up all their time? Seems a little harsh to me.

Depends on the jurisdiction, obviously, but they aren’t here. In fact, a lot of employers around here have policies explicitly stating that they won’t compensate employees for jury duty. That way the employee can claim financial hardship and get out of it.

No. I have been called to sit on a jury while in coursework and while I was writing a dissertation. In Massachusetts you can request to serve at a more convenient time, IIRC. Both times I was not selected (both times my group number was excused). There’s nothing inherently superior about being a student than being a janitor, CEO, or in the military. It’s part of being a responsible citizen.

When I got called for jury duty in California, I phoned someone up and told them I was a student at a college out of state and they gave me an extension until summer. Which seemed fair since then I was just missing my uninteresting summer job (and not flying across country to do jury duty). Of course I didn’t get put on a jury in the end, I never even was called out of the waiting room.

I dunno.

I got called for Jury Duty the last semester of my senior year of college, at an incredibly inconvenient time. I was fighting tooth and nail to do well in a Statistics class, and I had Jury Duty the same week as an exam that could not be made up. I didn’t dare try to defer because I had plans to travel this summer. I had already missed a week of STATS class because of complications from wisdom tooth surgery, and because of Jury Duty I missed the entire week of review for that exam.

I went to Jury Duty, I studied on lunch break in our special little room, and I got a B on the exam. Despite the inconvenience, I’m glad I had to go. I understand a lot better how the justice system works as a result, and I felt good for doing my civic duty. It seems to me if people have to miss work, students should have to miss school. Somebody’s gotta do it.

Not superior, different. If you’re a janitor, and you get jury duty, your employer can hire another janitor to clean up for the week you’re gone. If you’re a student, you can’t hire someone to take the class, write the paper or learn the material during the week you’re gone.

The reality is that the vast majority of working people have the ability to take a week off for vacation (or jury duty) and the situation can be handled in the normal course of business. It’s part of the deal when you set up a company to do business in this country, people get vacation, people get jury duty.

Students do not get any dispensation to take a week of vacation mid semester, they do not have any ability to arrange for the work to be done by someone else, and they’re paying big bucks to attend the school.

Students should get an automatic deferral to a time when school is out, and should not be required to serve when school is in session.