Does a medical marijuana card exempt you from drug tests?

Most people who qualify for a medical marijuana card also qualify for protection from the consequences of a failed employer drug test. Here are some exceptions, mainly around federal employees and contractors and employees working in the industries of security, defense and transportation. Some states allow employers to ban the use of medical marijuana for safety and other reasons. In these states, employers can maintain a drug-free, zero-tolerance workplace policy.

In other states, however, they may be prohibited or restricted from taking adverse labor measures. If prescribed, these two drugs could cause a confirmed positive marijuana metabolite result, but the prescription would constitute a legitimate medical explanation. ii) Ingestion of food products containing marijuana is not a legitimate medical explanation for a positive THCA test. Although marijuana is a prohibited Schedule I drug, there is currently an FDA-approved Schedule III drug (Marinol), with a second Schedule III drug in the process of being approved by the FDA that can be legally prescribed and used to meet the needs of patients under federal law.

The Cannabis Control Board also announced that approximately 203,000 marijuana-related charges are being suppressed from criminal background searches and are in the process of being sealed or eliminated, as part of the new marijuana bill, the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, passed in March. The other half of the states with medical marijuana laws specifically allow employers to fire employees for off-duty use or don't clearly address the issue. For example, courts in California, Colorado, and Oregon have ruled that employees can be fired for medical marijuana use, even if the employee has a serious medical condition and only uses marijuana outside of working hours. Due to wide variations between federal, state, and local regulations, it can be a complicated process for an MRO (who can serve a national clientele) to accurately verify the credibility of a medical marijuana recommendation claim.

With nearly half of the states having adopted some form of legal protection for medical marijuana users, the risks surrounding that decision have increased. ii) Ingestion of food products containing marijuana is not a legitimate medical explanation for a positive drug test result. Whether or not a company decides to adapt to medical marijuana depends on a variety of laws. Several states have passed laws on medical marijuana, making it legal under state law to use marijuana for certain medical purposes when such use is authorized on a “doctor's recommendation.” Marijuana is classified as a Schedule I controlled substance under the federal Controlled Substances Act, which means that under federal law marijuana cannot be “legally prescribed for use in any state.

About a dozen states with medical marijuana laws include protections for off-work use by employees with a valid prescription, as long as they don't report to work under the influence of marijuana. I) Passive exposure to marijuana smoke is not a legitimate medical explanation for a positive THCA test. However, some states have passed laws requiring employers to reasonably accommodate the use of medical marijuana.