Michigan Drug Testing Laws 2024

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Michigan Drug Testing Laws 2024

While Michigan has a workplace drug testing law for public employees, it remains one of the few states without laws addressing drug testing in the private sector. However, no state law prohibits private employers in the state from testing their employees for drugs, as long as doing so does not violate other legal provisions. The state’s Drug and Alcohol Testing Regulation 2.07 establishes drug testing standards for only certain public employees in Michigan. Not all employees can be subjected to workplace drug testing under this new law.

Per Section 333.26427/mileg.aspx?page=getObject&objectName=mcl-333-26427) of the state's Compiled Laws - Michigan Medical Marijuana Act (Excerpt), employers are not required to accommodate employees' use of marijuana in the workplace or permit working while impaired by cannabis. As a result, private employers in the state with drug-free workplace policies may punish employees who fail drug tests for cannabis, even for off-duty marijuana consumption.

In July 2023, members of the Michigan Civil Service Commission collectively approved a policy change on workplace drug testing. Under the new policy (Regulation 2.07), which took effect on October 1, 2023, most public employees will no longer be required to submit to pre-employment drug screening for cannabis. This means that some individuals who were previously denied employment for testing positive for workplace drug tests under the state’s Civil Service Commission can re-apply.

What Kinds of Drug Tests Can Employers Conduct in Michigan?

As stipulated in the state's Civil Service Commission Regulation 2.07, public employers in Michigan can test certain employees for drugs outlined in schedule 1 or 2 of MCL 386-1978-7-72. However, routine testing for these hundreds of drugs is not feasible. In most cases, cannabis, opiates, phencyclidine, cocaine, and amphetamines are those requiring testing whenever there is a need for workplace drug tests in Michigan.

Urine is the only acceptable form of sample for workplace drug testing in Michigan. Where applicable or required, public employers in the state are permitted to conduct the following kinds of drug tests for marijuana on their employees:

  • Pre-appointment Testing - This is mandatory for employees hired for test-designated positions
  • Reasonable Suspicion Testing - This test is conducted if an employer has reasonable suspicion that an employee has violated the state's workplace drug regulation
  • Post-accident Testing - This type of drug test is administered for any employee if there is proof that a drug-designated employee caused a work-related accident
  • Random Selection Testing - This is a drug test conducted by randomly selecting employees for testing
  • Follow-up Testing - This kind of drug test is usually conducted unscheduled on any employee who has done at least one of the following:
  • Completed or started a drug rehabilitation program
  • Willingly disclosed drug problems
  • Refused or failed a pre-appointment drug test

Can Employers Do Random Drug Testing in Michigan?

Yes, but not all employees can be subjected to this test. Public employers in Michigan can conduct random drug tests on employees who are subject to workplace drug testing law. Usually, this is done by selecting employees on a random basis for the test. Per Michigan drug testing regulation, the number of random tests conducted by any public employer in one year may not exceed 15% of the number of all test-designated employees under the employer.

What Happens if You Fail a Drug Test in Michigan for a Job?

In Michigan, an employer can relieve any test-designated public service employee who fails a workplace drug test or whose drug test reveals a prohibited concentration of drugs of their duties. Generally, a positive result for a workplace drug test in Michigan constitutes just cause for an employer to discipline an employee, up to and including dismissal from work. Also, the state's civil service can disqualify such an employee from future state employment.

Can I Be Fired for Refusing a Drug Test in Michigan?

Yes, for workplaces with drug testing laws. Any test-designated public employee who fails or refuses to submit to workplace drug tests in the state can be fired by their employer. The Michigan Civil Service Commission Regulation 2.07 prohibits classified employees from refusing to submit to required drug tests. Any of the following is considered a refusal to submit to a workplace drug test in the state:

  • Refusing to be drug-tested
  • Failing to provide an adequate test specimen without a satisfactory medical explanation
  • Doing things that obstruct the drug testing process

Can You Get Fired for Failing a Drug Test with a Medical Card in Michigan?

Although drug testing is no longer required for all state employees in Michigan, any test-designated employee who fails a drug test can be fired, even if they have a state-issued medical cannabis card. Similarly, employees (who are medical marijuana patients) of private employers with drug-free workplace policies can be dismissed from work for testing positive for a drug test. The Michigan Medical Marijuana Act does not protect employees of private companies against employment termination for failing workplace drug tests.

Can Employers Conduct Drug Tests on Applicants in Michigan?

There is no structured drug testing law addressing private employment in Michigan, but nothing restricts or prohibits private employers from testing job applicants for drugs, including cannabis. However, prospective employees for state jobs may not be subjected to workplace drug tests at the interview stage. Any job candidate for private employment who fails a drug test conducted as part of an interview process may be denied the job. No Michigan law restricts a private employer from refusing to hire a job applicant who tests positive for a drug test.

Is Pre-Employment Drug Testing Allowed in Michigan?

Yes, Michigan pre-employment drug testing laws permit public employers to subject new hires with conditional offers of employment to pre-employment drug tests. However, pre-employment drug testing is only mandatory for test-designated positions. Similarly, employees not occupying drug-designated positions must submit to pre-employment drug tests if selected to take up test-designated job roles.

Typically, the offer of employment must be conditioned upon an individual submitting to and passing a pre-employment drug test. New hires for test-designated positions with conditional offers of employment can only perform employment duties once they submit to and pass pre-employment drug tests. Nevertheless, a pre-employment drug test for marijuana in Michigan for a new hire to a job role that is not test-designated cannot be used to rescind such an employee's conditional offer of employment.

Does Michigan Allow Public Agencies to Submit Employees to Workplace Drug Tests?

Yes. As of 2024, Michigan only has a drug testing law that allows state agencies to submit certain public employees to workplace drug testing. Not all public employees can be made to undergo drug tests. The state currently has no law regarding workplace drug testing for private employment.

Can Employers Choose to Create Drug-Free Workplace Policies?

Although private employment in Michigan is not regulated for drug testing, no state law prohibits private employers from creating drug-free workplace policies. Under state marijuana laws, no employer is required to accommodate the use of cannabis, medical or recreational, on their premises. The Michigan Civil Service Commission Regulation 2.07, which established drug testing standards for select public employees, does not apply to private employment. Public employers must provide employees with educational materials explaining Michigan's drug testing policies during the hiring process. Such educational materials should include the following:

  • Description of the term "test-designation position"
  • The identity of the individual designated to respond to questions on the materials
  • Drug testing procedures and how the employer will protect employees, safeguard the validity of the test, ensure the integrity of the process, and ensure that test results are not mixed up
  • Which employees are subject to the Michigan Civil Service Regulation 2.07, including those in test-designation positions
  • A description of what constitutes an employee's refusal to submit to drug tests and the consequences of their failure to submit to testing
  • Specific information about what is prohibited under the state's Civil Service Regulation 2.07
  • Detailed information on the impacts of drugs on employees' work, personal life, and health
  • Explanation of the signs and symptoms of drug abuse problem and how to get assistance if an employee suspects such a problem is suspected
  • The circumstances that will warrant testing employees for drugs

Employees Exempted From Michigan Workplace Drug Testing Laws

While Michigan no longer requires drug testing for most state jobs, employees in certain safety-sensitive positions are exempted and must undergo workplace drug tests. They include the following:

  • Law enforcement officers or other persons permitted to bear arms in the line of duty
  • Healthcare workers
  • Individuals working with probationers, prisoners, or paroles
  • Persons who need Commercial Driver' Licenses (CDLs) to operate certain vehicles, machinery, or equipment
  • Persons handling harmful and explosive materials

What are the Requirements for Drug Testing Labs in Michigan?

The choice of drug testing laboratories by public employers in Michigan is not cast in stone, but the United States SAMHSA-certified laboratories are highly recommended. However, the state's Commission on Law Enforcement Standards maintains a list of labs authorized to conduct drug testing on law enforcement applicants. Other state agencies can choose to adopt this list. Ideally, a lab in Michigan is expected to have the ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation to be able to conduct workplace drug tests.

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