Most workplaces in the United States are drug and alcohol-free. Employers typically implement strict zero-tolerance policies and require future employees to submit to alcohol and drug tests upon being hired. Some even require a random drug test during their terms of employment.
Marijuana While at Work
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment receives about 400 medical marijuana card applications per day. In most cases, even if you have a medical marijuana card, using the substance at work is not permitted. Although the U.S Department of Labor protects employees who have serious medical conditions from being discriminated against by their employers through the Americans with Disabilities Act, it does not protect them from the federal government ban on marijuana usage. Although marijuana usage is legal in Colorado, while used for recreational and medicinal purposes, there are still things that workers cannot do while high. Some of which include:
- Operating heavy machinery
- Driving a motor vehicle
- Engaging in dangerous activities
Medical Marijuana and Workers Compensation
After consuming marijuana, THC can be detected in the bloodstream up to 40 days later. This means if you are injured on the job and are asked to take a drug test, it may come back positive. Generally, workers are entitled to workers' compensation coverage for any workplace injury regardless of who or what is at fault. Although compensation is awarded in most cases, there are some exceptions. If you are high while on the job, it is possible to be denied workers' compensation benefits. Compensation benefits may also be denied if:
- You intentionally hurt yourself.
- You caused an accident because you are intoxicated.
- You were committing illegal conduct at the time of the accident.
Contact a Lawyer
If your doctor has suggested medical marijuana to treat qualifying health conditions, it may be beneficial to speak with a skilled attorney. Lawyers can be a great resource and help you understand related legal issues and options you may have. Here at Law Office of Kevin Cahill, we have a team of award-winning attorneys who are dedicated to helping our clients get the justice they deserve. Let us help you.
Contact us today at (720) 548-2990 or visit us online to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team.