Maryland law requires an employer to provide employees time off for jury duty, and prohibits the employer from terminating or otherwise retaliating against an employee for this reason. A 2012 amendment to the law further provides that, “An employer may not require an individual who is summoned and appears for jury service for 4 or more hours, including traveling time, to work an employment shift that begins (1) On or before 5 p.m. on the day of the individual’s appearance for jury service; or (2) Before 3 a.m. on the day following the individual’s appearance for jury service.”
In Martin v. Douglas Development Corp., the employer provided paid jury duty leave, but required employees to return to work if dismissed from jury duty before the end of their normally scheduled shift. In this case, the employee did not appear for his 5:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. shift, but reported for jury duty at 8:00 a.m.. After being dismissed from jury duty at 12:00 p.m., he went home. He claimed 8 hours of paid jury duty time on his timesheet. He was subsequently terminated for failing to return to work after jury duty for the remainder of his shift. He then sued the employer for wrongful discharge in violation of public policy, contending that he was terminated for his jury duty.