New York - List of Jury Duty Excuses
New York - Getting Excused From Jury Duty
While jury duty is a civic requirement for all eligible citizens in New York, there are a number of excuses that can be used to legally get out of being required to report for jury selection or jury duty, or receive a deferral.
New York has a list of specific excuses that can be used to be exempt from reporting for jury duty, including excuses for military, elected official, student, breastfeeding, age, police, medical worker, firefighter and disability. You can also be excused if you don't meet the basic eligibility requirements for jury duty in NY.
Generally, if you qualify for one of the statutory excuses, you can respond to your jury duty summons letter with an excuse note containing proof of your excuse, and you will not have to report for jury selection.
While many states allow individuals over a certain age to request exemption from jury duty on account of their age, New York has no such statutory exemption. Elderly individuals may still be able to request exemption from jury duty on account of health, mobility, or other factors.
While there is no state-wide age based jury duty exemption in New York, age excuses vary by county. In some counties a prospective juror over the age of 75 may submit a completed summons/questionnaire with proof of age and a statement asking to be exempt.
Postponement is at the discretion of the summoning court, and can be applied for by prospective juror on active duty by submitting first page of Orders (without sensitive information)
While there are currently no provisions for breastfeeding mothers, currently there is an active bill to amend the current judiciary law.
In New York, if a prospective juror has a medical condition that prevents them from serving, they may submit a statement from a physician, stating the diagnosis and duration of condition, and conclusion about rendering serving as a juror at this time or in the future.
A prospective juror may apply for excusal or postponement upon showing that jury service would cause undue hardship or extreme inconvenience to the applicant, a person under their care or supervision, or the public. Postponements are to filed for with an alternative date within 6 months of the original and on which court will be in session.
No statewide automatic exemptions. Provisions vary by county and are at the discretion of each summoning court.
Can I Get Excused From Jury Duty Because I Work?
In New York, your employer is not allowed to penalize you for missing work for jury duty. Therefore, simply having a job isn't in itself enough to be excused from jury duty. However, some courts may excuse you if serving on a jury and missing work would cause undue hardship to either yourself or your employer.
Submitting A Jury Duty Excuse Letter
If you do not qualify for any of the New York statutory exemptions listed above but seriously think that attending jury selection would cause you undue hardship, you can always submit a jury duty excuse letter with your response to the summons, and ask to be excused. It will be at the discretion of the court that summoned you whether to accept or deny your excuse.
Remember - A Jury Selection Summons Doesn't Mean You'll Be On A Jury
Keep in mind that your initial jury duty summons is only for attending jury selection day, where it will be decided if you are to actually serve on a jury during the "Voir Dire" process. If you can't get out of attending jury selection, there are many ways to raise the odds that you will be excused after jury selection without being selected to serve on a jury.