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The Rules of Drug Testing in the Workplace

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It Texas, it's not exactly uncommon for an employer to require pre-employment drug testing or have a drug testing policy. The Texas Workforce Commission states that there is almost no limitations on private employers when it comes to drug testing, under both Texas and federal laws. This, however, is different from government employers. There have been court decisions that show certain drug testing practices can violate employee rights and be considered unreasonable search and seizures.

Many Texans assume that the employer is required to pay for a pre-employment drug test, but this is not always the case. While most companies will assume the burden of paying for the test, there is no Texas or federal law that states who specifically should pay for the test. Yet having employees pay for their pre-employment drug test could possibly lead to a discrimination suit by minority applicants who are unable to pay for the test. It's also important to note that the drug tests are not specifically covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but are instead considered to be a type of medical record. So the drug test results should be kept in confidentiality.

Employees should be given a drug and alcohol policy in writing. Employees usually have to sign a written acknowledgment that they have received a copy of the policy. Refusing to sign such a policy could result in a legal reason to terminate an employee. Such a termination would not qualify the individual for unemployment insurance. Houston employment lawyers can help individuals who have been terminated due to failure of a drug test by helping employees understand their legal rights for drug testing.

For more information about drug testing in the workplace, please visit our Related Resources links.

Related Resources:

  • Drugs and Alcohol Testing (FindLaw Bookshelf)
  • The Facts About Drug Testing During the Hiring Stage (FindLaw)
  • Contact a Texas Employment Lawyer (FindLaw)

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Pre Employment Drug Screening from Pre Employment Drug Screening on August 11, 2010 1:00 PM

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