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jin choung
12-12-2007, 08:36 PM
so have been called up for jury duty and am doing my time currently....

but i don't get it - an emphasis is made that financial reasons are not a valid excuse unless they cause EXTREME HARDSHIP.

but that begs the question - why should it be allowed to be a hardship AT ALL?

currently, i'm working under contract and am paid on a weekly basis. no insurance, no paid leave, certainly no jury duty pay.

so every day i'm not working, i'm losing money. HOW IS THAT JUSTIFIABLE?

in a capitalistic society, how is it that my time and my money can be commandeered like this with no compensation ($15 a day doesn't cover my lunch and transportation!).

we're meant to feel like we aren't being taken advantage of but it's galling that the only people in that courtroom who are not paid to serve are the jurors.

and after 5 days, i'm out well over a thousand dollars. and sorry, that ain't exactly chump change for me yet. and it's NO COMFORT that it's not exactly dire financial hardship... it's still money that was plucked out from my wallet.

so... what? chalk it up to justice tax? a pricey incarnation of civic duty?
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if it's important enough, why not pay me what my time is normally worth? or make it MANDATORY that employers pay. or let me deduct the cost from my tax bill.

and they don't EVEN SPRING FOR LUNCH?! that's a small (really small) thing but jeez, drag me out of my life and press me into service and you don't even spring for lunch?!

that's just bad form.

jin

oldtekerr
12-12-2007, 08:54 PM
Guilty!!!:devil:

riki
12-12-2007, 10:05 PM
That's life sometimes it sucks :)

http://motionographermedia.com/teg/TEGvideo878.mov

ted
12-12-2007, 10:58 PM
or make it MANDATORY that employers pay.

I agree with everything you say, except, what's with the mentality that employers should pay when the employee isn't doing what he's paid for?
Other then that, yeh, the system needs to be reformed! :thumbsup:

jin choung
12-13-2007, 12:19 AM
I agree with everything you say, except, what's with the mentality that employers should pay when the employee isn't doing what he's paid for?
Other then that, yeh, the system needs to be reformed! :thumbsup:

well that idea is just an extension of the idea that you CAN'T be fired for performing jury duty. the absence can sting productivity but employers have no recourse.

i understand how it would be an odious policy to employers. and i wouldn't worry about it cuz if they ever tried to make such a thing mandatory, it would get battled tooth and nail.

but i wouldn't mind seeing it get brought up... just for the controversy it would generate. so that the issue is actually discussed instead of "assumed to be cool" as is the current policy of making the juror pay the brunt of inconvenience.

jin

Iain
12-13-2007, 05:53 AM
I agree with everything you say, except, what's with the mentality that employers should pay when the employee isn't doing what he's paid for?


Every employer I have had has offered sick pay. I know some don't and I understand their point of view. I haven't ever been off for more than the odd day with a bad cold but I was glad not to have my salary docked.

If you have no choice in the matter (and you don't with jury duty), the employer is just looking after your financial needs, like with sick pay. It's a perk, I suppose.

Steamthrower
12-13-2007, 07:01 AM
But making it mandatory is a worse iteration of government than calling people for jury duty...

iconoclasty
12-13-2007, 07:03 AM
You're suppose to tell them you're racist against all races.

LW_Will
12-13-2007, 07:06 AM
You know Jin, I you explain your ideas on the world to the judge, you might get to go home sooner than you think.

Steamthrower
12-13-2007, 07:12 AM
You know Jin, I you explain your ideas on the world to the judge, you might get to go home sooner than you think.

I doubt that.

Tzan
12-13-2007, 08:52 AM
I always assumed that if you could prove that you were self employed that you wouldn't have to serve if you didnt want to. I guess thats a bad assumption :(

ted
12-13-2007, 10:26 AM
My Son is a Police Officer, I'm self employed so I want it over quick, and my assumption is he's guilty or he wouldn't be here in the first place.
No Defense attorney would pick me! :D

adamredwoods
12-13-2007, 11:52 AM
Jin,

I believe that is extreme financial hardship. Usually the only time people serve is when employers pay for it or you are unemployed.

Especially if a trial is more than one week, you cannot expect to go that long. Additionally, if you lose the contract b/c you are self-employed, that is another case for extreme hardship.

Contact your local jury office as soon as you are summoned. Usually they will let you go.

//Adam

oldtekerr
12-13-2007, 12:01 PM
I agree...
I am self employed too. No vacation, no sick days, no paid holidays, no paid overtime... If I dont work, I dont get paid. Granted, I charge an arm and a leg to make up for that stuff, but in this day and age unless your sitting on $200,000 you are in financial distress!!! So I would have found a way out of it!

calilifestyle
12-13-2007, 12:32 PM
The funny part about this is that lawyers charge an arm and leg if it goes to court. and you know that the judge gets bank. yet we the peers get suck with 15 bucks

jin choung
12-13-2007, 01:29 PM
Jin,

I believe that is extreme financial hardship. Usually the only time people serve is when employers pay for it or you are unemployed.

Especially if a trial is more than one week, you cannot expect to go that long. Additionally, if you lose the contract b/c you are self-employed, that is another case for extreme hardship.

Contact your local jury office as soon as you are summoned. Usually they will let you go.

//Adam

and tzan, re: what you said,

policy seems to have changed. if the trial is expected to last less than 7 days, there is almost no excuse possible anymore.

and if you want to be a malingerer, you better think it all the way through because the judge will NOT take your word at face value (he tells you so before the questions start). yesterday, there were several people who tried to say objectionable things and the judge asked follow up questions to which they were wholly unprepared.

5 days of missed pay is not going to kill me but it is still money that has been taken from me.

and i have no inherent desire to try to engage in the process in bad faith... but if this is going to simply be a part of my civic duty, my financial sacrifice should at least be acknowledged instead of glossed over.

jin

Steamthrower
12-13-2007, 01:46 PM
<sarcasm>

O Jin,

You are the citizen of a noble country!
Take pride in your inherent democratic power and realise O man that to thou art given the ability to condemn and to free!
O happy day! We art free from oppression and our government lovest us like lambs.

</end sarcasm>

What the brass does is just plain pitiful, ain't it?

Maxx
12-13-2007, 02:14 PM
The nice thing is, once you're done you should be ineligible for consideration for jury duty again for between 5 and 8 years, depending on CA state law. The loss of income sucks, though - I personally agree with adamredwoods that it does constitute financial hardship. Isn't it nice to know that complete strangers can tell us we're living very comfortably without ever even seeing our day-to-day routines or conditions? :D Gee!

jin choung
12-13-2007, 05:23 PM
i agree with adamredwoods too! : )

but a lady who seemed to be worse off than me had the same situation - no paid leave, single and no other means of support. judge denied her!

5 to 8 years?! where did you hear that? the news i'm hearing is that it exempts me for ONE year. geez, i wish it was 5 to 8.... that would almost be fair.

ugh... what's the most benign felony i can commit?

jin

Silkrooster
12-13-2007, 05:42 PM
Here in NY it is 4 years. I can see your point. At one time I beleive jury duty was suppose to be volenteer only. Now it is draft only and they think they can support us. Maybe someone should write to a congressman or senator see if the law can be change if for no other reason that severe inflation. Maybe back in the 1930's it was enough, but not in this day and age. This not even concidering living in a city, which is way worse than the country like this bumpkin.
Silk

Maxx
12-13-2007, 05:48 PM
OK - I'm nuts. :screwy: 8~

It's apparently only a 2 year exemption here in North Carolina. Wow. I obviously needed more coffee...

zapper1998
12-13-2007, 05:50 PM
Remember:




Jury Duty is "VOLUNTARY"




"NOT MANDATORY"





Michael

Matt
12-13-2007, 05:55 PM
I was called up for jury duty a number of years ago, lasted over a week because it involved the death of a baby that was shaken.

Have to say it was an intense experience, not something I'd look to do again anytime soon. After it was over, I was quite emotional and exhausted.

My company could claim for the time I was off but it was very little. Just something you have to swallow unfortunately, it's against the law here if you try and dodge it.

Don't know what I'd do if I was self-employed and it landed right in the middle of a big job with a tight deadline.

They really should either compensate you properly or allow you to defer until a more appropriate time.

GandB
12-14-2007, 08:37 AM
They apparently tried to call me up for jury duty when I was deployed to Iraq. My wife informed them of this, and asked if they felt I should be returned to the States for the trial. Apparently it was a good enough excuse. :)

I'm not sure what the exemption (number of years) is here in Michigan.

-Keith

Qexit
12-14-2007, 09:38 AM
I was called up for jury duty a number of years ago, lasted over a week because it involved the death of a baby that was shaken.

Have to say it was an intense experience, not something I'd look to do again anytime soon. After it was over, I was quite emotional and exhausted.I had two cases during my period on call. The first was dismissed on a technicality after the first day, the second was rape case that lasted several days with me acting as foreman for the jury. Not an experience I would like to repeat :thumbsdow


My company could claim for the time I was off but it was very little. Just something you have to swallow unfortunately, it's against the law here if you try and dodge it.

Don't know what I'd do if I was self-employed and it landed right in the middle of a big job with a tight deadline.

They really should either compensate you properly or allow you to defer until a more appropriate time.
Hm, it's around 8 years since I did jury duty here in the UK. The first time I was called I was able to defer it on the grounds of financial hardship as I was self-employed and needed the income from that two weeks work to pay the VATman or the regular Taxman. At that time you were allowed to defer once but had to go at the second 'invitation' unless there were very special circumstances. I received the same amount of money in compensation as someone on unemployment benefit at the time. The justification being that they paid you what they decided was the minimum you needed to live on, regardless of how much you earned normally.

JGary
12-14-2007, 09:55 AM
I'm a freelance artist and recently received a jury summons as well. Again, financial reasons was not a allowable excuse, but I was able to get out of it because I have two young children who would be left unattended while on jury duty. This was one of the few allowable excuses.

I just watched a PBS special talking about the Athenians and the origins of democracy. Through random selection everyone served the different different political posts (juror, senator, etc.) rotating on one month intervals. There were no elected officials. Of course they also had slaves who did all their work for them.

Tzan
12-14-2007, 11:45 AM
I think I saw a movie once where the President of the USA was chosen at random from the general population.

Perhaps if they could pass an IQ test and show decent general knowledge I would like to see that :)

Cohen
12-14-2007, 02:16 PM
Best thing to happen to this country is the right to trial by jury.

Iain
12-14-2007, 02:30 PM
Best thing to happen to this country is the right to trial by jury.

What about Extreme Makeover?

calilifestyle
12-14-2007, 02:43 PM
Best thing to happen to this country is the right to trial by jury.
Your right, i have to say that very true. only sad thing is that for the few years, if not 5+, the states haven't been following the laws.

IMI
12-14-2007, 04:21 PM
ugh... what's the most benign felony i can commit?

jin

Get caught with an ounce of pot and a scale and a couple of empty Glad sandwich bags.

Oh wait, you're in California. Better make that 17 pounds. :D

jin choung
12-14-2007, 06:46 PM
i think trial by jury is great too... just fing pay for it. if it's important, they should pay the jurors what they get in their day jobs. i'm not a charity.

jin

IMI
12-14-2007, 08:04 PM
i think trial by jury is great too... just fing pay for it. if it's important, they should pay the jurors what they get in their day jobs. i'm not a charity.

jin


If they pay the jurors what they get in their day jobs, how long would it be before the local prosecutor starts specifically pushing to select jurors who are unemployed or work in low income jobs?
Say you get indicted for something - you want a handful of McDonald's burger flippers and day laborers deciding your fate?

Stooch
12-14-2007, 09:07 PM
If they pay the jurors what they get in their day jobs, how long would it be before the local prosecutor starts specifically pushing to select jurors who are unemployed or work in low income jobs?
Say you get indicted for something - you want a handful of McDonald's burger flippers and day laborers deciding your fate?

you have a point. but im sure you wouldnt want a bunch of pissed off individuals who are losing money and time for you, pretty much against their will. Because you have gone and F-ed up and commited the crime in the first place, causing everyone inconvenience.

this automatically sets up a negative bias that may affect judgement. Why not have people who are emotionally and personally unaffected, using sound and neutral judgement? Show em your paystub, get reimbursed. that would be the ideal solution.

actually if people stopped committing crime in the first place - it would be fantastic.

Hopper
12-14-2007, 09:41 PM
Well Jin, if the judge doesn't think losing $1000 of unrecoverable income isn't a hardship, he shouldn't be a judge. What an ***. Being that he doesn't know you, what you do, or if that sum of money is a drop in the bucket for you or a months worth of income just shows his ignorance as a judge. Epic fail.

I would ask him whether or not he thinks losing $1,000 is a hardship or not. If he says no, then politely ask him for a check.

IMI
12-14-2007, 09:47 PM
you have a point. but im sure you wouldnt want a bunch of pissed off individuals who are losing money and time for you, pretty much against their will. Because you have gone and F-ed up and commited the crime in the first place, causing everyone inconvenience.

this automatically sets up a negative bias that may affect judgement. Why not have people who are emotionally and personally unaffected, using sound and neutral judgement? Show em your paystub, get reimbursed. that would be the ideal solution.

actually if people stopped committing crime in the first place - it would be fantastic.


You have an excellent point as well. My answer would be, "NO!"
I'd like to think though that most people, once they've resigned themselves to the fact they're stuck on a jury and going to trial, would be fair about it. Nothing they can do about it by that point other than ride it out, and they're not likely to make it to that point if the defense is worried they're going to yell GUILTY! just to get out of it.
It would though be a good thing to pay people for what their time is worth - at least a fair portion of it (I don't want my tax dollars paying Bill Gates in full for two days of jury duty...), but only if they can insure that government ineptness in budgeting doesn't create a scenario where they get pressured to spend less on jurors, and thus select people who are not exactly among my "peers".

theo
12-14-2007, 10:09 PM
The jury system is a laughingstock and it makes so many mistakes it should almost be considered criminal. Of course, this is beside the point.

I am somewhat surprised the judge did not let you off Jin. I have been before two judges and had no problems getting relieved from duty due to the financial hardship reason.

Maybe you didn't state your case with enough emphasis. Maybe he should have let you TYPE your reasons not to serve...:D

jin choung
12-14-2007, 10:12 PM
well if you're bill gates, you have the luxury of taking time off whenever you have to.

heck, that wouldn't be a bad idea - court MUST pay a person's normal wages UNLESS they're rich (whatever that means)....

so a jury will consist of burger flippers sitting right next to oprah, brad pitt and the fortune 500 set!

ha! that might actually work! even things out into the middle!

and just leave us middle class schlubs alone so we can pursue our lives for criminy's sake.

oh well, was dismissed yesterday - funny, the jury was all white with a token black person! like a stereotypical caricature!

and two days pay that i won't get back.

rrrrrr.... but have been looking into it and i'm thinking if i get called next year, i'm gonna make sure i get dismissed by bringing up "jury veto" or "jury nullification". the judge's instructions were VERY CLEAR and he asked us - in this court room, it doesn't matter how you feel about a law, can you be counted on to enforce it? not ONCE did he mention anything like jury veto....

and i've a feeling that anyone who brings it up will be ejected fast. so that's my strategy for next time. somebody remind me if i forget.

jin

p.s. look it up. very interesting stuff. i would exercise jury veto certainly if it was the prohibition laws or in modern day, medicinal marijuana busts....

jin choung
12-14-2007, 10:16 PM
The jury system is a laughingstock and it makes so many mistakes it should almost be considered criminal. Of course, this is beside the point.

I am somewhat surprised the judge did not let you off Jin. I have been before two judges and had no problems getting relieved from duty due to the financial hardship reason.

Maybe you didn't state your case with enough emphasis. Maybe he should have let you TYPE your reasons not to serve...:D

as people have been saying, juror laws have changed recently. missing pay is nothing to these people. hardship is NOT enough! it is written in the summons - EXTREME HARDSHIP ONLY need apply!

and as i said, a lady who looked like she was worse off than me stated her case very clearly and was denied.

as for typing it... heheh.... i think with my penchant for dropping f-bombs when i really get going, it would land me rather quickly in contempt.

jin

jin choung
12-14-2007, 10:18 PM
oh and imi, my point is if this jury system is so important, government should have to PAY for it.

what you don't pay dearly for, you take for granted.

i want them to pay very fing dearly.

jin

IMI
12-14-2007, 10:37 PM
oh and imi, my point is if this jury system is so important, government should have to PAY for it.

what you don't pay dearly for, you take for granted.

i want them to pay very fing dearly.

jin


Don't get me wrong, I get your point. I've been through it too.
But the government takes everything for granted. The only people who are going to pay for it are us, the taxpayers.
Well, glad you got through it, sorry about the money loss. Sucks, dude, really.
I'd love to be all high and mighty about civic duty and all, but next time I'll definitely be searching for this thread, wondering...what was it he said to do? ;)

jin choung
12-14-2007, 10:44 PM
thanks for the condolences. yeah, and the next person up, give jury veto a try and fill us in on how it went!

jin

IMI
12-14-2007, 10:58 PM
Would be nice if we [still] had similar power in creating laws or at least in nullifying ridiculous laws. We as people, that is, not We as subjects of our "representatives".

Yes, it makes sense that we aren't made aware of the power we actually have over our government. Too bad it's not put into practice enough.

theo
12-15-2007, 08:30 AM
as people have been saying, juror laws have changed recently. missing pay is nothing to these people. hardship is NOT enough! it is written in the summons - EXTREME HARDSHIP ONLY need apply!

and as i said, a lady who looked like she was worse off than me stated her case very clearly and was denied.

as for typing it... heheh.... i think with my penchant for dropping f-bombs when i really get going, it would land me rather quickly in contempt.

jin

Well, all I can say is, it worked for me as a self-employed person running a small business.

jin choung
12-15-2007, 03:56 PM
hey theo,

when were you called? cuz the judge specifically addressed your situation in the courtroom i was in and said it was not a valid excuse.... !

jin

theo
12-15-2007, 04:33 PM
hey theo,

when were you called? cuz the judge specifically addressed your situation in the courtroom i was in and said it was not a valid excuse.... !

jin

It was about two years ago. I was called up three times actually within one year. The third time doesn't count because the case ended up being settled out of court.

The first two times I was called in twice in one month. In the first instance I never got to the judge in person. I did show up, obviously, for the initiation meeting. The next day I called the office at that courtroom to express my concerns about my self-employment status. The chick I spoke with said she would ask the judge whereupon a day later they relieved me.

The second time about two weeks later I was summoned to a very high profile murder case in Toledo. In the courtroom I was asked to the bench to talk to the judge and the lawyers whereupon I then expressed my concerns, rather vocally but respectfully, about not being able to provide for my family since I was a self-employed creative.

It could have been that the judge took a liking to me, as is often the case when people meet me (my personality is very affable). We actually discussed art for about three-four minutes while the lawyers impatiently shifted about.

The judge just gave me a nice smile and told me to go home. I actually enjoyed the conversation with him... he seemed melancholic and almost enchanted with my freedom.... weird, but neat.

hrgiger
12-16-2007, 11:33 AM
You can do what George Carlin says and tell the judge that you can spot guilty people just by looking at them. Tell him it's all about the distance between the eyes. You should be back to work in no time.

adamredwoods
12-16-2007, 04:13 PM
How's this for irony.....

I just got called in too!
Let's see how this plays out, I'll let you know. (Why the holidays? I 'm leaving out of state on Tues.)

jin choung
12-16-2007, 11:28 PM
going out of town was accepted as an excuse in the courtroom i was in.

but you just get a POSTPONEMENT... not a reprieve.

condolences.

jin