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When Do Companies Drug Test Applicants and Employees?

Table of Contents

Drug screening/testing for employee

Drug screening for employee is a mandatory part of the hiring process of any organization. Most companies have the legal right to conduct any type of alcohol/ drug test on their employees to ensure that they are fit to work. It is applicable for both pre-employment and post-employment. Any form of drug testing conducted on individuals by companies is governed by state law. 

Organizations usually notify their employees and candidates prior to conducting the drug testing application process. It is oftentimes mentioned on the first application or the job posting itself.

When is drug testing for employee important?

Most private employers are not legally obligated to conduct drug/ alcohol tests for their employees. However, it is a mandate enforced by the law for industries dealing with transportation, defence, safety, aviation and transit. It is compulsory for these companies to test employees as well as their applicants in particular roles for alcohol and drug use.

Other industries that often need drug testing for their employees are:-

  • Medical
  • Education 
  • Federal
  • State
  • County 

Laws surrounding drug screening for employee 

Drug testing laws can vary from state to state. Some states have laws that impose certain limitations regarding drug screenings.

For instance, the ACLU, of North Carolina, states that all employers be they public or private can be allowed to test employees and applicants without limitations. But the drug tests have to be conducted in a laboratory approved by the state. However, in Ohio, testing can only be performed on applicants with prior notice after an employment offer is made to a candidate. 

Pre-employment drug testing for alcohol and illicit substances

State law permits many companies in the U.S. to conduct drug tests on job applicants as an integral part of the hiring process. A negative drug test could lead to the job offer being withheld from the applicant.

If you are already on prescription medication, make sure you check on which drugs the employer will screen you for. Make sure that you disclose such information prior to the drug tests. Employees and candidates can be excused if they are on medication for temporary treatment. If there is a potential risk of you bringing harm to others due to said medications, make sure you notify that to your employer as well.

Employee alcohol and illicit drug testing

Employers who conduct routine drug tests on their employees usually mention this policy clearly in their guidelines or handbook. Based on state law, employees are even randomly selected to ensure fairness.

In various states, employers test employees who they suspect to be under the influence when they are already working. Other reasons for conducting post-employment drug testing due to unexcused absence or lateness 

What are the different types of drug tests?

There are many kinds of drug tests with urine drug tests being the most popular. Some of them include:-

  • Urine drug tests
  • Hair drug tests
  • Blood drug tests
  • Sweat drug screens
  • Saliva drug screens
  • Breath alcohol tests

List of drugs that companies look for

Other than just alcohol, companies can request testing services to test if they are legal or to test for a variety of other substances, legal and illegal. A standard employer drug test usually includes:-

  • Cocaine (Crack, coke)
  • Amphetamines (Speed, meth, crank)
  • Phencyclidine (Angel dust, PCP)
  • Opiates (Heroin, codeine, opium, morphine)
  • THC (Marijuana, cannabinoids, hash)

When a company conducts further testing, the following protocols are followed:-

  • 8-Panel Test
  • Benzodiazepines (Librium, Valium, Xanax)
  • Barbiturates (phenobarbital, butalbital, secobarbital, downers)
  • 10-Panel Test 
  • Methaqualone (Quaaludes)
  • Propoxyphene (Darvon compounds)
  • Methadone (used for treating heroin addiction)

Additional testing that can be performed on request by the employer has been listed below:-

  • Inhalants (paint, glue, hairspray)
  • Hallucinogens (Mushrooms, LSD, peyote, mescaline)
  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab, Oxycodone)
  • Anabolic steroids (Muscle-building hormones)
  • MDMA (Ecstasy)
  • Alcohol
  • Nicotine

Why choose Affordable Rapid Testing, Phoenix for all conducting reliable pre-employment drug testing?

Drug screening for employee as well as potential job candidates is usually imposed upon candidates. Choosing a reliable center for a cheap and seamless testing process is of utmost importance to garner the most accurate and quick results. Affordable Rapid Testing is a go-to destination for all your testing needs. They aim to offer you a variegated number of tests with the quickest and most reliable lab results. Check out their website to know more. 

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