I've served as foreman on a jury, about 18 years ago. Pretty cool, then they settled out of court.
I was summoned about 4 months ago to a US District court, which is a bigger deal than county court. This is 2 weeks of being on call, which is significantly a bigger pain in the derrierre. Against my conscience, I was excused due to the nature of my job. It's impossible to run a kitchen from the inside of a jury room. It's equally impossible to not know till 5pm the previous evening if you are going to be in that jury room or not. The court clerk agreed and excused me.
....for 3 months, it seemed. I was summoned again 1 month ago. Same deal. I'm on call from 10/6 to 10/17, required to phone in every evening to ascertain if I am required to report the next day. This is madness. I have to get someone else to cover me, yet I don't know if I'll need that person till 5:30. Then that person has to get someone to cover him, not knowing till I call. I cannot check production, place orders, guage inventory, etc.
I didn't request another excuse because I'm sure the whole thing would show up just in time for christmas. I also was informed that my company will pay for three days of jury duty, and make up the difference of what is paid by the court for 2 days, giving me a total of 5 days that I can serve and still make enough money. If I get put on a jury, and this case lasts more than a week, I'm up the proverbial creek.
I suppose I can plead financial hardship. Who can afford to miss days of work and not get paid? Not anyone I know.
I fully support and encourage everyone to do their civic duty and report for jury duty. It's a huge inconvenience but think of the alternatives. Wouldn't it be nice, though, if there was a nice little law that required employers to pay full salary while an employee is out doing what is required by law.
I mean, I don't want to have to show up and be all contrary and disagreeable, you know...
Contempt of court just doesn't look good on a resume.