Lawmakers made it a crime for businesses to fire employees who are summoned to jury duty. The new law allows the fired juror to sue their employer for reinstatement plus up to five years back pay. The legislation was sparked after a Dallas woman was fired by her boss in December when she refused to skip jury duty as he requested.
Previously, an employee could collect up to six months back pay if fired for performing jury duty.
The new law allows the courts to punish by contempt, an employer who terminates an employee for performing jury duty or takes any other measures intending to dissuade an employee from performing jury duty.