Medical Marijuana Basis For Lawsuit
Medical Marijuana is now a basis for a discrimination lawsuit. New Mexico issued a very bad ruling last year that required an employer in the state to pay for a claimant’s marijuana prescription. This broke through an important barrier where marijuana is accepted as a prescription by the Workers Compensation community.
One had to wonder how long before someone alleges hiring discrimination due to the use of medical marijuana. Actually, lawsuits have been previously filed in other states that have legalized the use of medical marijuana.
The two differences with this legal action are the state is Rhode Island and the job applicant was a graduate student pursuing an internship.
According to ABC News, a textile company had refused to hire a graduate student for a two-month internship because she uses medical marijuana to treat frequent and debilitating migraine headaches, a decision her lawyer calls discrimination.
The applicant admitted to the textile company’s human resources department that she had a medical marijuana license. No drug test was ever administered. The company decided not to offer the internship specifically due to the marijuana issue.
The textile company may have been better served by using another reason to not allow the graduate student to begin her internship.
Medical marijuana will be a popular topic with Workers Compensation over the next few years as more states legalize its use. It is still considered a controlled substance by the Feds and is still a Schedule I drug as listed by the FDA.
2020 Update on Medical Cannabis
Recreational marijuana legalization will likely create more instances of lawsuits due to discrimination for terminating an employee who has tested positive for THC. THC stays in a person’s system for up to two weeks. THC is a highly-fat soluble chemical that stores in fat cells for weeks if not months.
The recreational marijuana enforcement by employers may be worse than the “old days” of being concerned with only medical marijuana.
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