In the state of Virginia, there are no laws restricting or forbidding drug testing. What this means for workers in Virginia is that if their employers ask them to take a drug test, the employer is within their rights to do so.
Federally, there are laws in place for certain industries like transportation, aviation, and contractors who work with NASA and the Department of Defense (DOD) requiring drug testing. Outside of these specific industries, there are no federal requirements for drug tests to take place. Therefore, other industries are at the discretion of their state and local laws to guide them on whether to require employee drug testing as a means to obtain employment.
What is the Drug Testing Statute in Virginia?
Multiple states have laws that regulate an employer’s ability to administer drug testing to potential and current employees. The following states do not have any laws for pre-employment drug testing:
- District of Columbia
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Dakota
- West Virginia
Virginia does not stop employers from administering drug tests as a condition of employment and they also do not require workers’ compensation insurers to mandate testing. However, Virginia laws do necessitate that workers’ compensation insurance providers distribute discounts to those companies that choose to have a drug-free workplace program. The standards used to define a drug-free program are open to the insurance companies to dictate.
How do Employees in Virginia Deal With Illegal Drug Testing Claims?
If you work in Virginia and believe that you were tested illegally, it is up to you to fight and prove that the testing was done in an invalid or unlawful way. Details about how the test was done can prove that the test was not appropriate. Consider the following:
- The Americans with Disabilities Act (ACA) offers protections to individuals who must take specific medications for a disability. If an applicant test comes back positive because of a legal drug and that results in the applicant not being offered a job, the company may be liable.
- If an employer is unfairly only testing certain groups such as individuals of a specific race, age, or gender, a potential discrimination claim may be filed.
- Any type of privacy violations can result in liability.
- If an employer makes public a false positive test result or uses results to behave maliciously against an employee, they may be liable for a defamation claim.
Do You Have Drug Testing Questions in Virginia?
If you were forced to take an illegal drug test, or faced adverse treatment due to the results of a drug test, you may be able to hold your employer or prospective employer accountable for unfair treatment. At Barney Injury Law, Scott R. Barney Esq. is a Hampton Roads attorney who can represent your best interests and ensure your rights are protected. Do not hesitate to call my Virginia Beach law office to set up a free consultation at (757) 296-8343 today.