[chatbot] Cannabis and Employment Law: Understanding the Legal Issues for Employers and Employees

Cannabis and Employment Law: Understanding the Legal Issues for Employers and Employees

By: Barry Chase
: 3 Minutes to Read

Our NYC and Miami Entertainment Law Firm advises and represents clients in all legal matters related to music, sports, television/film, visual and literary works, modeling, online matters, and intellectual property.

Cannabis and Employment Law: Understanding the Legal Issues for Employers and Employees

As cannabis legalization continues to spread throughout the United States, employers and employees alike are facing new legal challenges in the workplace. With medical and recreational marijuana now legal in many states, it’s important for both employers and employees to understand their rights and responsibilities when it comes to cannabis use and employment law.

Employers must balance their obligation to provide a safe and productive workplace with their employees’ rights to use cannabis for medical or recreational purposes. Employees, on the other hand, must navigate the complex and often conflicting laws around cannabis use and employment discrimination.

Here are some key legal issues that employers and employees should be aware of regarding cannabis and employment law:

  1. Drug testing policies: Employers have the right to maintain drug-free workplaces, but they must balance this against the rights of employees to use cannabis for medical or recreational purposes. Employers should have clear and consistent drug testing policies that comply with state and federal laws, and that provide reasonable accommodations for employees who use medical marijuana.
  2. Discrimination: Employees who use cannabis, either for medical or recreational purposes, are protected from discrimination under state and federal law. Employers cannot discriminate against employees simply because they use cannabis, but they can take disciplinary action if an employee is impaired at work or if their cannabis use violates company policies.
  3. Safety concerns: Employers have a duty to provide a safe workplace for their employees, which includes protecting them from the risks associated with cannabis use. Employers should have clear policies in place that address safety concerns related to cannabis use, such as prohibiting employees from using cannabis during work hours or requiring them to disclose any medical cannabis use that could affect job performance.
  4. Accommodations: Employers may be required to make reasonable accommodations for employees who use medical cannabis, such as adjusting work schedules or job duties to accommodate the employee’s medical needs. Employers should work with employees to find reasonable accommodations that do not create an undue hardship on the company.
  5. Zero-tolerance policies: Employers may choose to implement zero-tolerance policies for cannabis use in the workplace, which prohibit employees from using cannabis both on and off the job. However, employers should be aware that these policies may not be legal in all states, particularly if they violate an employee’s right to use medical cannabis.

Navigating the complex and ever-changing landscape of cannabis and employment law can be challenging for both employers and employees. That’s why it’s important to work with experienced cannabis attorneys who can help you navigate the legal issues and protect your rights under the law. By staying informed and working with legal professionals, employers and employees can ensure that they are in compliance with state and federal law while also protecting their legal rights.

ChaseLawyers, Your Trusted Advisors in an Evolving Legal Marketplace

ChaseLawyers has deep industry knowledge and experience with providing legal guidance on all matters concerning cannabis law. We provide quality representation to cannabis businesses, CBD and other alternative strains providers, paraphernalia eCommerce brands and cannabis influencers who want to operate their business online and stay compliant with state and federal guidelines.

Whether you need us to help you enforce your intellectual property rights or you need legal counsel on state or federal compliance, ChaseLawyers can help you navigate the ever-evolving regulatory environment with minimum effort.


Barry Chase

Barry Chase, Esq., Senior Partner at ChaseLawyers®, is a distinguished figure in the realm of sports and entertainment law, offering Harvard-level representation that is both cost-sensitive and exceptional. An honors graduate of Yale College (Phi Beta Kappa) and Harvard Law School, Chase's illustrious career commenced at a prominent Washington, D.C. law firm, now known as Wilmer Hale. Here, he honed his expertise in Communications and First Amendment law, representing media titans such as CBS, the Times-Mirror Company, and Time, Inc. in pivotal Federal Communications Commission (FCC) matters.

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