Marijuana is legal in over half the country, but that doesn’t stop employers from being able to drug test employees for marijuana use. Employers can choose to stop marijuana drug testing in Nevada and other states, but many won’t for reasons we will explore below.
Employers use different types of drug tests to check for the use of illicit substances. Many of these tests still include marijuana, even in states that legalized the recreational use of marijuana. They are legally allowed to continue testing for marijuana as long as marijuana remains federally illegal. We will now go over the two most common types of drug tests employers use and how each determines marijuana use.
Blood testing for drugs is one of the most effective ways to detect the use of drugs. However, it is also one of the most invasive and expensive, which is why employers don’t use this method of drug testing very often.
Blood tests can detect how much THC is in a person’s system; however, marijuana blood tests “have been under fire for not effectively demonstrating impairment.” Heavier users may have THC in their system for much longer and not feel the effects of impairment, while novice users usually have THC in their system for a shorter period and feel impairment for longer. The AAA even concluded that there is “no scientific backing for the proposed legal driving limit” for people driving with THC in their system.
Blood testing for marijuana is often used to test for impairment while driving, for individuals entering rehab, and for employees with strict work regulations.
Urine tests are much more widely used, and less expensive, than blood tests. The urine test is usually used to test for illicit drugs, but the amount of time urine tests can detect drug use varies greatly from drug to drug.
For cannabis users, the amount of time a urine test can detect THC will vary depending on how much cannabis was smoked in a given period of time. Also, those who weigh more will likely retain THC in their system for longer because THC tends to grab hold of fat cells throughout the body. The Drug Testing Network reports the follow urine testing detection times for marijuana:
Cannabinoids (THC, Marijuana) Approximate Detection Time:
1 time only
2-4x per month
2-4x per week
5-6x per week
When it comes to urine tests detecting weed, it really does depend on how much and how often a user will consume marijuana. Marijuana detection for heavy users may be as long as 75 days or more after consuming.
Even though marijuana is legal in 28 states and recreationally legal in eight, plus the District of Columbia, employers and government agencies are still drug testing for marijuana use. To avoid getting fired for something that may be legal in your state, the best thing you can do is remember the following tips and give your body a good detox before the upcoming drug test.
Whether you are a light user or a heavy user, the tips listed above will help keep your system healthy during and after marijuana use.
The future of cannabis drug testing is still a little hazy (pun intended). Truthfully, until people know what the federal government plans for marijuana legalization, employers, and government agencies can (and many will) continue drug testing their employees for marijuana.
However, given that millions of people can now access legal marijuana, some employers might face the issue of a smaller hiring pool if they exclude marijuana users. For example, the FBI reported in 2016 that they are having trouble finding new cyber security experts to hire because a substantial number of talented hackers across the country enjoy the use of marijuana, and their no-tolerance hiring policy is inhibiting the hiring process.
As far as impairment marijuana drug tests are concerned, it is a top priority to find an effective drug test that actually determines if a person is impaired behind the wheel. Many defense attorneys are rightly arguing that the current drug tests are not reliable and are putting the wrong people behind bars. Many companies who don’t want their employees smoking on the job, but don’t care what they do after work, are also interested in this type of drug test.
The most recent talk of a new drug test development focuses on the Druid drug testing app that law enforcement officers can use. The app is still in the initial stages though, but it’s promising for a future with better impairment drug tests available for marijuana users.
Las Vegas ReLeaf, a medical marijuana dispensary in Las Vegas, NV, is happy to provide more information on marijuana legalization in Nevada. Stop by our dispensary, located just 500 feet from the Las Vegas Strip, to learn more about medical marijuana and recreational marijuana use in Nevada. Visit our website at www.lasvegasreleaf.com to explore our menu, see our specials, and learn more about the benefits of medical marijuana.