Seyfarth Synopsis: In a simpler time, courts reviewing medical cannabis laws issued employer-friendly decisions, generally finding no duty to accommodate medical cannabis even when state laws allowed its use for medical purposes. Now, however, the tide is rapidly turning. Where does California employment law currently stand on cannabis? Below we address burning issues regarding accommodations and drug testing.

What is
Continue Reading Cannabis in California: High Time to Smoke Out the Issues

Seyfarth Synopsis: Can employers deny employment to people who use cannabis under a medical prescription authorized by state law? In more and more states, the answer is now “No.”

Changes in cannabis laws are creating a new haze for employers. What follows is a quick summary citing some (not all) states that now require employers to think twice before denying
Continue Reading Budding Development: States Requiring Employers to Tolerate Medical Cannabis Use

Seyfarth Synopsis: Dominating this spring’s planting of proposed employment-related legislation are bills aimed at ending sexual harassment and promoting gender equity. Among the secondary crops are bills regarding accommodation, leave, criminal history, and wage and hour law. It threatens to be another bitter fall harvest for California’s employer community.

California legislators stormed into the second half of the 2017-18 legislative
Continue Reading 2018 California Legislative Update: It’s Spring! What Bills Have Sprung?

Seyfarth Synopsis: A proposed bill would amend California employment discrimination law to protect medical marijuana users.

California—already famous (or infamous) as a sanctuary in the immigration area—could soon become a sanctuary for medical marijuana users. A proposed bill would protect medical marijuana users from employment discrimination.

Currently, California employers can deny employment to users of marijuana, even if the use
Continue Reading Into the Weeds: Will California Employment Law Protect Medical Marijuana Users?

Seyfarth Synopsis: California employers may not require employees to submit to random drug testing, except under very limited circumstances.

California public policy, stated in our Constitution, strongly favors the right of privacy. But employers have their own legitimate interest in maintaining a safe, drug-free work environment. So what’s the blunt truth about random drug testing in California?

As we
Continue Reading Random Drug Tests (Still) Not Advisable In Most California Workplaces

(Illustration) California MarijuanaBy Geoff Westbrook

With New York joining in last year, nearly half the country has laws permitting state residents to use marijuana for medical purposes, and a handful even permit recreational use. California led the movement when it passed the so-called “Compassionate Use Act” in 1996. At present, use and distribution of marijuana remain federal offenses, although unenforced per current
Continue Reading A “Hotbox” Of Legal Issues: California’s Workplace Marijuana Laws

By Chantelle Egan and Laura Maechtlen

Drug testing implicates the California right to privacy, which is enshrined in our Constitution.  Therefore, employers must be careful when drug testing is a component of their onboarding process.

The General Rule  

A private employer in California can require a job applicant to pass a pre-employment drug test as a condition of employment, regardless
Continue Reading Onboarding Series: Pre-employment Drug Testing: Don’t Fail To Have A Compliant Program

Happy New Year, dear Readers!

This week, which marks the one-year anniversary of the Cal Pecs Blog, we look back at the top five issues that you found most interesting in 2013:


Continue Reading California Peculiarities Blog: Top 5 Issues of 2013

Drug use in California can cause headaches for employers.  Balancing employee privacy interests against safety concerns forces employers to make tough choices with little guidance.  Legal drug testing of existing employees is so limited that most drug use won’t be detected until after an accident.  With increasing support for legal medical marijuana, many employers have struggled to determine how to

Continue Reading Just Say No! Protection for Workplace Medical Marijuana Use Up in Smoke