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“Positive Drug Test Doesn’t Prove Jack” For Employees With Medical Marijuana

DENVER — According to Chuck Passaglia of Littleton-based Employment Law Solutions, a positive drug test for marijuana isn’t sufficient evidence of whether an employee is “under the influence” on the job.

“Positive drug test doesn’t prove jack,” Passaglia said. “A drug test doesn’t certainly indicate how long ago the employee used it and it also doesn’t indicate how a person is impaired … They could have been using the marijuana at night legally at home and coming into work the next day without any impairment.”

The State of Colorado has not enacted any employment-related drug or alcohol testing laws, but a positive drug test can penalize workers’ compensation benefits by 50 percent. Medical marijuana is presently not a “medically prescribed controlled substance.”

Passaglia and employment lawyer Kim Ryan gave a presentation, entitled “”Waiting to Exhale! Medical Marijuana at Work,” at the Colorado Bar CLE on Monday about employment issues and medical marijuana. Video of the seminar can be purchased here.

Medical Marijuana in the Workplace: Drug Testing from Colorado Bar Association CLE on Vimeo.