Cuomo’s Push to Legalize Pot Poses ‘All Kinds of HR Challenges,’ Firms Say

February 07, 2020

Domenique Camacho Moran, partner and labor and employment attorney at Farrell Fritz in Uniondale, said a large part of the handwringing over the legalization of marijuana and employer drug testing policies comes from the difficulty of determining if an employee is under the influence of cannabis on the job.

“Unlike some other drugs and substances, marijuana stays in the system for a very long time,” Moran said. “You can get a positive drug test several days, if not weeks after.”

What that means for employers is that an on-the-spot drug test, unlike a breathalyzer in the case of alcohol, cannot accurately tell if an employee is under the influence of cannabis in the moment.

When it comes to preemployment testing, Moran said, increasingly she’s urging business clients to evaluate why they test for marijuana in the first place.

“In the old days we did it because it was unlawful and indicated that someone might violate the law,” she said. Today, with changing attitudes and laws, “I’m not sure they’re getting valuable information they can use.

“My view is every employer on Long Island should be looking at whether it makes sense to test for [it] during preemployment,” she said.

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  • Related Practice Areas: Labor & Employment
  • Featured Attorneys: Domenique Camacho Moran
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