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California law on drug testing

Under California law, drug testing of employees is generally prohibited unless it is required by law or  there is a legitimate business reason for the testing. California law prohibits employers from testing  employees for drugs or alcohol during the pre-employment process unless the testing is required by  law or is part of a federally mandated drug testing program. 

If an employer wishes to conduct drug testing during employment, it must have a legitimate  business reason to do so. For example, an employer may require drug testing for employees in  safety-sensitive positions, such as commercial truck drivers, pilots, or nuclear power plant workers. In  addition, an employer may require drug testing if there is reasonable suspicion that an employee is  using drugs or alcohol on the job, or if the employee is involved in a workplace accident or incident. 

Even if an employer has a legitimate business reason for drug testing, there are still restrictions on  how and when the testing may be conducted. For example, the testing must be conducted in a  manner that is minimally intrusive to the employee’s privacy, and the results of the test must be kept  confidential. In addition, an employer may be required to provide employees with a reasonable  opportunity to contest the test results. 

It’s important to note that there are additional requirements that may apply to drug testing in  specific industries or professions. If you have questions about drug testing and your rights as an  employee in California, you should consult with a qualified employment attorney.

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