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Can I Use Medical Marijuana at Work?

Minnesota’s Medical Marijuana Law has been around for about a year-and-a-half now. Over 600 patients have successfully registered to receive medical marijuana.

While the Minnesota Medical Marijuana Law offers protects registrants and medical marijuana users from certain civil and criminal penalties, the law doesn’t provide a blank check for registrants to use wherever, whenever, or however they want.

Perhaps most notably, the Minnesota Medical Marijuana Law does not authorize a registrant to use medical marijuana while “on the job.” An employer does not violate the law if they fire a registered medical marijuana user for use of medical marijuana during the hours of employment.

No discrimination If Fired for Use During Work Hours

Terminating an employee who happens to be a registered medical marijuana user for using or consuming medical marijuana during work hours does not appear to violate the Minnesota Human Rights Act, the Minnesota Lawful Consumable Products Act, or the Americans with Disabilities Act.  

Minnesota courts have not yet definitively decided this issue; however, court cases from other medical marijuana states have sided with employers. At most, the Minnesota Human Rights Act could be interpreted to force an employer to allow a registered employee to possess medical marijuana on an employer’s premises, so long as the employee does not use during work hours.  

The primary reason why registered users would not be protected under these circumstances is that medical marijuana is still illegal under federal law.  While medical marijuana is not aggressively prosecuted by federal authorities, the illegality of medical marijuana shields employers from discrimination related lawsuits.

HHire an Apple Valley Minnesota Workers Rights lawyer Today

So, while Minnesota’s Medical Marijuana Law largely protects registered users from criminal penalties, participants need to be aware of these types of collateral consequences that can result from the lawful use of marijuana. Contact us today at 651-222-6603 to schedule a free consultation about your case.

Author Photo John T. Arechigo, Esq.

Attorney John Arechigo has a passion for criminal defense in St. Paul, MN. John received his J.D., from Hamline University School of Law and also carries a Bachelor of Arts from, The University of Minnesota. John was named Attorney of the Year for 2019 by Minnesota Lawyer. Additionally, John was also named as a 2019 Rising Star and was selected to Minnesota Super Lawyers in 2021. He devotes nearly 100% of his practice to defending individuals charged with a crime.

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