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Legal marijuana buds in California. (Photo: InFootage/Shutterstock) Legal marijuana buds in California. (Photo: InFootage/Shutterstock)

When it comes to maintaining a drug- and alcohol-free workplace, most employers have a strict zero-tolerance policy that requires employees to regularly submit to alcohol and drug tests. However, given that recreational and medical marijuana (MMJ) is legal in many states and tetrahydrocannabinol can remain in the user’s system anywhere between one and seven days, can an employee who has a workplace injury and tests positive for marijuana be denied workers’ compensation benefits?

The fact is because marijuana remains illegal at the federal level, MMJ patients are not covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act, making this a state-by-state issue. Today, laws regarding post-accident marijuana testing remain a contentious issue in the workers’ compensation arena, and employers will most likely continue to find inconsistencies between state and federal regulations regarding medical cannabis products and workers’ compensation.

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