Author: Charles Frank

What Happens When There Is a Failed Drug Test in the Military? Tully Rinckey PLLC

how to explain failed drug test

Throughout much of this process, service members may not be assigned a free military defense counsel, or Judge Advocate, until it is too late. Deciding whether to conduct drug testing for candidates and employees? A failed drug test may be noted in the records of the employer that requested it, but they typically keep this information confidential. However, the results of a positive drug test for certain positions, such as those regulated by the Department of Transportation, may be available for future employers to see.

how to explain failed drug test

Under HIPAA, an organization has limited access to drug testing results and is required to keep that information confidential. If an employee is under the influence of drugs and alcohol at work, this can be a serious liability for your company – especially in the case of safety-sensitive positions. In the event an employee tests positive for any number of illegal narcotics, review your company’s drug policy and regulations in your area before taking action. An employer may use an unpredictable selection process to screen their employees to deter illegal drug use. While random drug testing isn’t outright illegal, there have been lawsuits against employers for invasion of privacy, defamation, discrimination or wrongful discharge.

GoodHire offers multiple drug screening options, including 4- to 10-panel, tests to meet the testing needs of your company. A Medical Review Officer (MRO) verifies all results to ensure the highest possible accuracy. We also offer other screening options to help you create a comprehensive background check program.

The more advanced testing allows for separating or isolating the substances that could interfere with the drug test results. After separating these substances, your samples can be submitted to a second drug confirmation test. Explore the best defense for positive drug test results and what your rights are when it comes to medical care. Understanding how the law protects you and getting the help you need for drug use can lead to a healthier lifestyle and more success in the workplace.

Prevention: Staying Informed and Making Choices

Unlock the power of your driver, safety, and compliance data to build a higher standard of risk mitigation. Get more applicants and streamline the employee onboarding process with Dash by Foley. Entering rehab can help you kick any substance problem you’re struggling with and return to work in a better state of mind.

An unfavorable discharge characterization can lead to loss of benefits, diminished ability for gainful employment, and other consequences. Knowing what one’s rights are when it comes to these tests and how to fight back are crucial to maintaining both one’s career and reputation. If a positive result is indicated, check with the donor for any prescription drugs that might be cross-reacting (see chart) with the test. Keep in mind that employers are not required to continue employee pay during this time. That’s why it’s recommended to file for FMLA assistance right away. The 12 weeks will provide time to detox from substances and begin treatment.

  1. Please be aware that this might heavily reduce the functionality and appearance of our site.
  2. However, constitutional rights require employers to inform employees that drug screening is part of the annual exam.
  3. A colored line must appear in the Control Region (C) and a colored line must appear in the Test Region (T) for each drug.
  4. The 12 weeks will provide time to detox from substances and begin treatment.
  5. The detection levelsare different for each individual drug, and most of the drug testing in the workplace uses a standard set of cutoff levels.
  6. When facing challenging hiring decisions, you may consider other steps such as reviewing Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidance.

If a test is negative, it means that the concentration of the drug in the urine sample is below the designated cutoff level set by the test. A person may still have that drug in their system, just not above the cutoff limit. For example, if a donor has 30 ng/mL of marijuana in his or her system, and the cutoff level for THC is 50 ng/mL, the donor would test negative on a drug test for marijuana. Cutoff or detection levels are suggested by SAMHSA and are used to prevent the majority of false positives for trace amount of drugs in a donor’s system. The detection levelsare different for each individual drug, and most of the drug testing in the workplace uses a standard set of cutoff levels.

Reasons for Drug Testing

While an employer can fire individuals who fail drug tests, limitations exist. Some employees work in safety-sensitive jobs where being drug-compromised could pose an immediate threat to others’ safety. Failure to pass mandatory specific drug tests can result in an employee’s job termination if the employer is a federal contractor or part of the government.

how to explain failed drug test

Without a control line, the test is not working and thus not valid. A drug test is negative no matter how strong or faint the line is – remember, a line is still a line. Get a FREE demo of Foley’s drug and alcohol testing software today by filling out the form below. Once a valid prescription is received, and it is determined that the employee is using the medication as prescribed, the result will be reported as a verified negative to the employer. This law grants you immediate assistance at a licensed treatment facility for up to 12 weeks. During that time, your employer can’t terminate you or pull your benefits.

What does a positive drug test mean for you and your employee?

However, avoid jumping to conclusions about what might happen after failing a drug screening test. If you know you weren’t using illicit drugs or substances before the screening, dispute the drug test. States laws vary regarding what steps an employer can take if an employee fails a drug test. If a job offer is contingent on successfully passing a drug test, that offer will probably be rescinded if the employee fails. In Vermont and Minnesota, employers can’t fire employees who fail a drug test but agree to attend a rehabilitation program. Other states allow an employee to contest the results and take the test again or require an employer to notify employees when serious consequences are issued for drug test failure.

If you believe you’ve received a false positive, it’s crucial to communicate this to the testing entity and request a retest or a different testing method. It’s also a good idea to keep a list of medications or supplements you’re taking to provide as evidence if necessary. If you’re wondering how to explain failed drug test results, be open and honest with your employer.

What if you were taking something that could cause a false positive test result? If this is the case, the drug testing lab can conduct a different test to determine that you haven’t taken any drugs the test is searching for. This method is expensive and not the first line of testing for employers.

Your best defense for positive drug test results is to be transparent and consider asking for help. Many private employers are usually willing to assist their employees with drug or alcohol rehabilitation. Enrolling in treatment can help you find the care you need and may save you from losing your job.

A positive drug test result is when ONE line appears in the Control Region (C) and NO line appears in the Test Region (T). This is known as “Refusal to Submit.” It involves the same consequences as a positive result. This is what’s known as “Actual Knowledge,” and it has the same consequences as a positive result. The employee must make the split-specimen test request to the MRO within 72 hours. At that time, vial B will be shipped to a laboratory for testing. This cannot be the same laboratory used to analyze the first sample.

A service member should know how to effectively advocate in this situation, which could be the difference between facing an adverse separation or sustaining their career. As with all drug testing products, it is necessary for a line to be present in the Control Region (C). Below the (C) line are numbers, and each number corresponds to the drug listed below that specific strip window. Drug testing is counterintuitive from other tests, such as a pregnancy test. A drug test is positive if there is no line on the test, as opposed to a line indicating a positive pregnancy test. However, there always needs to be a control line (indicated below with the line connecting the two Cs).