Vermont Drug Laws
We are going to explore two aspects of Vermont drug laws and the information necessary to learn how to pass a drug test in Vermont.
Learning The Basics Of Vermont Drug Laws.
First, we are not attorneys and can not provide specific advice on the Vermont Drug Laws. It is very important you seek professional advice skilled with legal advice that is familiar with the ins and outs of local Vermont drug laws.
Second, for those of you who are concerned with those Vermont Drug Laws being applied to you, we offer information on the major just four major drug tests one might be facing in Vermont.
There Are Four Major Drug Tests Given In Vermont.
Each drug test has its own specific strengths you must avoid and weakness in which one can take advantage. What you learn here could make the difference between failing and passing a drug test in Vermont.
Vermont Drug Laws For Employees.
Vermont Drug Laws allow drug testing in certain situations as long as the employer follows the procedural rules. Vermont employers with a drug-free workplace program must test employees in the following circumstances:
- after an accident resulting in lost work time.
- on reasonable suspicion of drug use (reasons for suspicion must be documented and made available to the employee on request).
- as part of a routinely scheduled fitness-for-duty medical examination.
- after the employee returns to work following rehabilitation for a positing drug test. Testing is not required if the employee entered rehab voluntarily, rather than after a positive drug test.
In addition, employers may conduct random drug testing as they see fit.
Rules for Vermont Applicants.
A Vermont employer may require an applicant to take a drug test only if the applicant has received a job offer conditioned on a negative test result. The employer must give applicants a written notice that includes:
- an explanation of the testing procedure
- a list of drugs to be tested for, and
- a statement that therapeutic levels of prescribed drugs will not be reported.
Rules for Vermont Applicants.
Employers in Vermont may test employees for drugs only if all of the following are true:
- The employer has reasonable cause to believe that an employee is using drugs or is under the influence.
- The employer has an employee assistance program (EAP) that provides for rehabilitation.
- Employees who test positive and agrees to enter the EAP may not be terminated.
Random testing is prohibited.
The employer must contract with a medical review officer who reviews test results and keeps them confidential. The officer must contact employees or applicants to explain a positive test result. Employees and applicants have the right to an independent retest at their own expense.
An employee who tests positive and agrees to enter the EAP or rehabilitation program may not be terminated. However, the employee may be suspended for up to three months to complete the program. If the employee subsequently tests positive, the employee may be terminated.
Legal Claims Arising From Drug Testing.
Have you been illegally asked or required to take a drug test in Vermont? Even though Vermont Drug Laws allow an employer to drug test, many employees and might may have legal claims based on how the test was conducted, who was tested or how the results were used.
Here are some examples:
- Violation of Vermont Drug Laws And Procedures. Although an employer has the legal right to test, it must follow the state’s requirements. An Vermont employer that doesn’t provide the required notice of its testing policy or observe state procedural rights (for example, by failing to conduct a confirmation test after an initial positive result or by allowing unauthorized personnel to perform the test) could face legal problems.
- Disability Discrimination. An applicant or employee who is taking medication for a disability is protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Some prescribed medications turn up on drug tests and some drugs that would otherwise be illegal (such as opiates) are legitimately prescribed for certain conditions. If an applicant is turned down because of a positive drug test and the applicant’s medication was legally prescribed for a disability, the company could be liable.
- Other Discrimination Claims. An employer who singles out certain groups of employees – for example, by race, age, or gender – for drug testing could face a discrimination claim.
- Invasion Of Privacy. Even an employer that is allowed or required to test might violate employee privacy in the way it conducts the test. For example, requiring employees to disrobe or provide a urine sample in front of others could be a privacy violation.
- Defamation. An employee might have a valid claim for defamation if the employer ( that the employee tested positive, if the employer has reason to know that the test might not be accurate. For example, if a retest showed that the first test was a false positive or the employee has appealed the first test, the employer may be liable for revealing the results of the positive test beyond those with a need to know.
Breakdown Of Vermont Drug Laws.
|Statute of Order:||Vt. Stat. Ann. Tit. 21 §511 et seq.|
|Covered Employers:||Public and private employers.|
|Applicant Testing:||Applicant testing authorized with advance written notice to applicant, after conditional offer of employment has been made, and if test is part of reemployment physical.|
|Employee Testing:||Employee testing authorized as part of an employee assistance program or when there is probable cause for suspicion of substance abuse. Random testing prohibited. Employer may suspend employee who tests positive for period of rehabilitation, but may not discharge an employee who agrees to rehabilitation after first positive test.|
|Conditions & Methods:||Testing only by certified laboratory, documentation showing chain of custody, confirming test with part of original sample in case of positive findings, and opportunity for employee to explain findings.|
|Testing Bullet Points:||
The Vermont Drug Law For Marijuana Possession.
The Vast Majority Of Drug Test Failures in Vermont Are For Breaking Vermont Drug Laws For Marijuana, Not Federal Or Local Laws.
Vermont drug laws have their own specific strengths you must avoid and weakness in which one can take advantage when it comes to marijuana. The same is true of the Federal Laws concerning marijuana.
Marijuana is the third most popular recreational drug in Vermont behind only alcohol and tobacco. Marijuana has been used by nearly 100 million Americans at one time or another with an equal cross-section of people in Vermont using marijuana. According to the federal government, some 25 million Americans have smoked marijuana in the past year and more than 14 million do so regularly despite harsh laws against its use. Vermont is no exception in its implementation of marijuana law.
Unlike alcohol, for which impairment can be reasonably measured using a breathalyzer, valid detection for marijuana requires drug testing. This is time-consuming, complicated and the drug tests for marijuana cannot determine an approximate degree of impairment. The detection of marijuana is also complicated by the various types of drug testing available and the types of myths, half-truths and rumors that surround marijuana drug testing.
Overview Of Vermont Drug Test Laws.
- Legal Stand – An employer who wishes to direct employees to drug testing may do so under the legal guidelines provided by the state. Vermont state law provides detailed guidelines for employee drug testing and disallows any drug testing outside the legal gamut.
- Consequence – Initial screen results are to be certified by a federally approved laboratory. In case this is a first time for the individual, there is a reference to a licensed Substance Abuse Professional to provide a second chance. A first time fault is not permitted to lead to termination.
- Policy – A written and appropriately communicated policy is deemed necessary by law.
- Drugs Specified – The law provides a detailed list of Schedule 1 and other specified drugs and alcohol. All drug tests are prohibited except the ones permitted by law.
- Procedure – Only certified collectors and state approved laboratories may be utilized for the purpose of drug testing. The law covers any body fluid taken as a sample for detecting the presence of a regulated drug. It primarily covers urine analysis. In case the test covers only urine analysis, the individual may request a blood sample drawn on his/ her own expense. The laboratory is directed to provide all results to the Medical Review Officer who in turn analyzes the results. The MRO will provide the results to the employees and only provide positive results to the employer. The collector is responsible to retain a portion of the sample for retest after a period of 90 days. Confidentiality is strictly court ordered or by donor consent. The sample collectors are required to be certified and re-certified every three years.
- Violation – An employer who violates the law is subject to civil and criminal proceedings. The civil penalty ranges from $500 to $2000 and the criminal penalty ranges from $500 to $1000.
- Timing – An employer can request an applicant to appear for a drug test only after making a valid offer of employment. The applicant must be provided a written notice about the types of drugs that will be checked for. The notice must clearly state that medically prescribed drugs within acceptable limits will not be reported. Random tests are prohibited unless there is a probable cause of intoxication at the time of an event.
- Costs – The law specifies that the cost is to be borne by the employer. The employer is required to inform the employee of the opportunity to independently test of a positive result for a substance at the cost of the employer.
- Notice – A written notice must be provided to job applicants with information pertaining to the tests that are being conducted, the limitations accepted (e.g., treatment of prescribed drug under medical supervision) and the freedom to exercise independent test options.
- Individuals covered – The law allows employers to direct employees and job applicants for substance abuse testing. Public employers are also covered by the law.