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Legal Question Regarding Employment

Discussion in 'Marijuana' started by frogsandlegos, Jun 25, 2015.

  1. frogsandlegos

    frogsandlegos Active Contributor

    Since marijuana (for recreational use) is legal in Colorado, can employers still fire you if you fail a drug test for it? I have heard they cannot but wanted to check.
  2. Aescopri

    Aescopri Active Contributor

    They can't really "fire" you, but they can certainly demand an explanation. You then would have to tell them your reason for using the drug and explain if you are still using it. Though, they might not be satisfied with the explanation and still fire you. Your employers will be able to write the reason for firing you as "unneeded" or another reason other than marijuana-use.
    If you truly wish to keep your job, explain thoroughly and don't lie about anything. Lying will only make the situation worse, and you just shouldn't do it—especially to your employers. Anyhow, do some job scouting anyway because there's always the off-chance that your employers do fire you (which shouldn't be a high chance).
  3. I think the courts ruled that they can actually fire you if you fail a drug test for it in Colorado. It's probably best to ask a lawyer but there is legal precedent for such a thing. There's a hospital in my city that drug tests its employees for nicotine. Even though cigarettes are legal, they'll definitely fire their employees if they caught with some in their system. I'd assume that's the same logic with marijuana, even in states where it's currently legal.
  4. sbatz72

    sbatz72 Active Contributor

    I would think they should not check for a marijuana use when it is legal in the state. However, if you do get injured on the clock, then they can check. After all they do have an alcohol policy while on the clock and alcohol is legal also.
  5. irishrose

    irishrose Community Champion

    Employers certainly reserve the right to fire you and find someone else if your work is sub-par. If someone they are seeking to have replaced smokes marijuana, it maybe the straw needed to push them over the edge in that decision. Also, it may depend on the job. Many jobs require that their employees do not use any drugs due to safety concerns, such as those working in the medical field, those teaching and working with children, and people who use heavy equipment. Such professions often require drug testing.
  6. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    An employer can fire you for any reason they see fit, as long as it's not one of the protected items (things like race, religion, gender ect.)
    If you are showing up to work under the influence of marijuana it doesn't matter if it's legal or not, just like you can get fired for showing up drunk off alcohol.
    My work actually has a clause in the employee handbook that says you are not even permitted to come to work if you have a hangover.
    Besides marijuana is still illegal in the USA at the federal level.
  7. Tsky45

    Tsky45 Community Champion

    I don't know the laws in Colorado but I'm sure you can't get fired for using something legal. I really think in a state where marijuana is legal you should be able to get a job. It really depends on the employer tho, every company has there own rules. The way I see it as long as you don't get high at work and do your job well, there shouldn't be a problem. Smoking marijuana and living in Colorado shouldn't give you many worries about employment.
  8. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    If you don't know the laws then how can you be sure that you can't get fired?
    That's not particularly good advice....
    As I said before, it's still illegal according to the federal government.