Workplace Drug Testing Issues – Illinois State Laws
Illinois requires employers on State public works projects to maintain a drug-free workplace.
These categories do not affect DOT-regulated drug testing. Government employers should always call for potential additional restrictions on employee drug testing.
Update on Illinois and Recreational Marijuana
Illinois HB 1438
- Legalizes recreational marijuana effective January 1, 2020, for those ages 21 and older
- Employers are not required to permit employee use of marijuana while at work, performing job duties, or on call.
- Requires specific changes to drug-free workplace policies and procedures:
- Employers can have policies addressing drug testing, smoking marijuana, marijuana storage, etc., provided that the approach is applied in a nondiscriminatory manner.
- Employers are not required to accommodate employees being under the influence or using marijuana in the workplace.
- Employers must have “good faith belief” that an employee is under the influence – can be established using specific, articulable symptoms, but not strictly a drug test.
- Employers should use a positive drug test for marijuana in conjunction with specific signs and symptoms of impairment before taking action.
- Employers cannot take action based on the use of lawful products (marijuana) outside of work hours.
- Defers to federal, state, and local restrictions on employment, such as Part 40
|Drug Testing Issue||Status||Comments|
|Instant or POCT Testing||Restrictions||It is not allowed for employers on public works projects.|
|Drug Panels||Restrictions||For employers on public works projects, at a minimum, must use a nine-panel urine drug test.|
|Laboratory||License||For confirmation testing, SAMHSA or CAP approved.|
|MRO Required||Not Required||The use of MRO is highly recommended avoiding liability in your drug testing program. Also should be used for employers on public works projects.|
|Random Testing||No Restrictions||It is required for employers on public works projects.|
Intoxication Defense – States vary in their willingness to allow employers to use an injured worker’s intoxication against a compensation claim. State laws’ intoxication defenses generally fall into one of three rough categories: reasons that do not depend on causation; defenses that require some form of proximate causation between intoxication and injury; and defenses that require that intoxication be the sole cause of injury. Always check with your insurance company and attorney when you have a positive post-accident test after an injury.
This chart is intended for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon for legal guidance. State and local law vary greatly; therefore, you are advised to consult experienced legal counsel during the design of your actual substance abuse testing program and with any questions that follow.